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From Latin vitrum.


vitrum (plural vitra)

  1. (obsolete) Glass; a glassy material.
    • 1665, Robert Hooke, Micrographia:
      I imagine it to be some small parcel of the Steel, which by the violence of the motion of the stroke […] is made so glowing hot, that it is melted into a Vitrum, which by the ambient Air is thrust into the form of a Ball.



From Proto-Italic *wedrom (glass), from Proto-Indo-European *wed-ro- (water-like), from *wed- (water) (whence also Latin unda (water)). Compare semantic parallel in Middle Iranian where "glass" is also derived from "water": Middle Persian ʾp̄ḵynk' (ābgēnag, crystal, glass), compound of ʾp̄ (āb, water) + -kyn' (-gēn) + -k' (-ag) > Persian آبگینه(ābgīna, glass), Sogdian ʾʾpkyn-, ʾʾpkynʾk (crystal), Ossetian авг (avg) (Iron) / авгӕ (avgæ, glass; bottle) (Digor). Compare also Old Armenian ապակի (apaki) and Hungarian üveg (glass; bottle). The plant and its dye were named after the color of glass in antiquity.



vitrum n (genitive vitrī); second declension

  1. glass
    Mihi dicendum est de materia, ex qua vitrum conficitur.
  2. a woad; a plant used for dying blue
  3. woad; a blue dye used by the Britons made from that plant


Second-declension noun (neuter).

Case Singular Plural
Nominative vitrum vitra
Genitive vitrī vitrōrum
Dative vitrō vitrīs
Accusative vitrum vitra
Ablative vitrō vitrīs
Vocative vitrum vitra


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  • vitrum in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • vitrum in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • vitrum in Charles du Fresne du Cange’s Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (augmented edition, 1883–1887)
  • vitrum in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire Illustré Latin-Français, Hachette
  • vitrum in Harry Thurston Peck, editor (1898) Harper's Dictionary of Classical Antiquities, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • vitrum in William Smith et al., editor (1890) A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, London: William Wayte. G. E. Marindin
  • De Vaan, Michiel (2008) Etymological Dictionary of Latin and the other Italic Languages (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 7), Leiden, Boston: Brill, page 684
  • Sihler, Andrew L. (1995) New Comparative Grammar of Greek and Latin, Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, →ISBN, page 212