Webster 1913 Edition
huile, fr. L.
oleum; akin to Gr. [GREEK]. Cf.
Any one of a great variety of unctuous combustible substances, more viscous than and not miscible with water;
as, oliveThey are of animal, vegetable, or mineral origin and of varied composition, and they are variously used for food, for solvents, for anointing, lubrication, illumination, etc. By extension, any substance of an oily consistency;
☞ The mineral oils are varieties of petroleum. See
Petroleum. The vegetable oils are of two classes,
essential oils(see under
natural oilswhich in general resemble the animal oils and fats. Most of the natural oils and the animal oils and fats consist of ethereal salts of glycerin, with a large number of organic acids, principally stearic, oleic, and palmitic, forming respectively stearin, olein, and palmitin. Stearin and palmitin prevail in the solid oils and fats, and olein in the liquid oils. Mutton tallow, beef tallow, and lard are rich in stearin, human fat and palm oil in palmitin, and sperm and cod-liver oils in olein. In making soaps, the acids leave the glycerin and unite with the soda or potash.
(Old Chem.), a complex oil obtained by the distillation of animal substances, as bones. See
Bone oil, under
Ethereal oil of wine,
Heavy oil of wine
a bag, cyst, or gland in animals, containing oil.–
any beetle of the genus–
Meloeand allied genera. When disturbed they emit from the joints of the legs a yellowish oily liquor. Some species possess vesicating properties, and are used instead of cantharides.
Oil box, or
a fixed box or reservoir, for lubricating a bearing; esp., the box for oil beneath the journal of a railway-car axle.–
a stopcock connected with an oil cup. See–
A paint made by grinding a coloring substance in oil.
Such paints, taken in a general sense.–
a painting made from such a paint.–
a cup, or small receptacle, connected with a bearing as a lubricator, and usually provided with a wick, wire, or adjustable valve for regulating the delivery of oil.–
a gas engine worked with the explosive vapor of petroleum.–
inflammable gas procured from oil, and used for lighting streets, houses, etc.–
A gland which secretes oil; especially in birds, the large gland at the base of the tail.
A gland, in some plants, producing oil.–
a pale yellowish green, like oil.–
Oil of brick,
empyreumatic oil obtained by subjecting a brick soaked in oil to distillation at a high temperature, – used by lapidaries as a vehicle for the emery by which stones and gems are sawn or cut.
Brande & C.–
Oil of talc,
a nostrum made of calcined talc, and famous in the 17th century as a cosmetic.
Oil of vitriol
strong sulphuric acid; – so called from its oily consistency and from its forming the vitriols or sulphates.–
Oil of wine,
Œnanthic ether. See under–
The art of painting in oil colors.
Any kind of painting of which the pigments are originally ground in oil.–
a palm tree whose fruit furnishes oil, esp.–
Elaeis Guineensis. See
an East Indian herring (–
Clupea scombrina), valued for its oil.
The liver shark.
a still for hydrocarbons, esp. for petroleum.–
a test for determining the temperature at which petroleum oils give off vapor which is liable to explode.–
A plant of the genus
Ricinus communis), from the seeds of which castor oil is obtained.
An Indian tree, the mahwa. See
The oil palm.–
To burn the midnight oil,
to study or work late at night.–
Essential oils, under
imp. & p. p.
p. pr. & vb. n.
To smear or rub over with oil; to lubricate with oil; to anoint with oil.
Webster 1828 Edition
An unctuous substance expressed or drawn from several animal and vegetable substances. The distinctive characters of oil are inflammability, fluidity, and insolubility in water. Oils are fixed or fat, and volatile or essential. They have a smooth feel, and most of them have little taste or smell. Animal oil is found in all animal substances. Vegetable oils are produced by expression, infusion or distillation.