Potassium Po*tas"si*um, n. [NL. See {Potassa}, {Potash}.] (Chem.) An Alkali element, occurring abundantly but always combined, as in the chloride, sulphate, carbonate, or silicate, in the minerals sylvite, kainite, orthoclase, muscovite, etc. Atomic weight 39.0. Symbol K (Kalium). [1913 Webster]

Note: It is reduced from the carbonate as a soft white metal, lighter than water, which oxidizes with the greatest readiness, and, to be preserved, must be kept under liquid hydrocarbons, as naphtha or kerosene. Its compounds are very important, being used in glass making, soap making, in fertilizers, and in many drugs and chemicals. [1913 Webster]

{Potassium permanganate}, the salt {KMnO4}, crystallizing in dark red prisms having a greenish surface color, and dissolving in water with a beautiful purple red color; -- used as an oxidizer and disinfectant. The name {chameleon mineral} is applied to this salt and also to potassium manganate.

{Potassium bitartrate}. See {Cream of tartar}, under {Cream}. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Potassium — (pronEng|pəˈtæsiəm) is a chemical element. It has the symbol K ( la. kalium, from ar. qalīy), atomic number 19, and atomic mass 39.0983. The name potassium comes from the word potash , as potassium was first isolated from potash. Potassium is a… …   Wikipedia

  • POTASSIUM — Le potassium, troisième élément de ce groupe, possède les propriétés caractéristiques des métaux alcalins. Il a été découvert en 1807 par Humphry Davy lors de la réduction électrolytique de la potasse caustique fondue (KOH). Son symbole chimique… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Potassium — Argon ← Potassium → Calcium Na …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Potassĭum — Potassĭum, soviel wie Kalium …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • potassium — Symbol: K Atomic number: 19 Atomic weight: 39.0983 Soft silvery metallic element belonging to group 1 of the periodic table (alkali metals). Occurs naturally in seawater and a many minerals. Highly reactive, chemically, it resembles sodium in its …   Elements of periodic system

  • potassium — metallic element, 1807, coined by English chemist Sir Humphrey Davy (1778 1829) from Mod.L. potassa, Latinized form of POTASH (Cf. potash) (q.v.). Davy first isolated it from potash. Symbol K is from L. kalium potash, from Arabic al qaliy the… …   Etymology dictionary

  • potassium — ► NOUN ▪ a soft silvery white reactive metallic element of the alkali metal group. ORIGIN from POTASH(Cf. ↑potash) …   English terms dictionary

  • potassium — [pə tas′ē əm] n. [ModL: so named (1807) < potassa < Du potasch, POTASH, by Humphrey DAVY Sir Humphry, who first isolated it from potash] a soft, silver white, waxlike metallic chemical element, one of the alkali metals, that oxidizes… …   English World dictionary

  • potassium — /peuh tas ee euhm/, n. Chem. a silvery white metallic element that oxidizes rapidly in the air and whose compounds are used as fertilizer and in special hard glasses. Symbol: K; at. wt.: 39.102; at. no.: 19; sp. gr.: 0.86 at 20°C. [1800 10; < NL; …   Universalium

  • Potassium — The major positive ion (cation) found inside of cells. The chemical notation for potassium is K+. The proper level of potassium is essential for normal cell function. An abnormal increase of potassium (hyperkalemia) or decrease of potassium… …   Medical dictionary

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