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[ahy-uh-dahyn, -din; in Chemistry also ahy-uh-deen] /ˈaɪ əˌdaɪn, -dɪn; in Chemistry also ˈaɪ əˌdin/
noun, Chemistry
a nonmetallic halogen element occurring at ordinary temperatures as a grayish-black crystalline solid that sublimes to a dense violet vapor when heated: used in medicine as an antiseptic. Symbol: I; atomic weight: 126.904; atomic number: 53; specific gravity: (solid) 4.93 at 20°C.
Also, iodin
[ahy-uh-din] /ˈaɪ ə dɪn/ (Show IPA)
Origin of iodine
1814; < French iode (< Greek īṓdēs, orig. rust-colored, but by folk etymology taken as í(on) violet + -ōdēs -ode1) + -ine2; introduced by H. Davy Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for iodine
  • iodine, a mineral essential for proper thyroid functioning and mental development, may be added too.
  • One of them produces iodine, which gives the amber color.
  • Late that year he swallowed iodine in an unsuccessful suicide attempt.
  • Traces of burnt-yellow iodine and some sort of blue marker stained the outline.
  • Supermarkets are short of food, and pharmacies lack iodine, which people have bought for fear of radiation.
  • Water must be boiled or treated with iodine before it is safe to drink.
  • Add to that the human dependence on a regular source of iodine to regulate our metabolism.
  • They rinse the acid from the cable and expose it to iodine vapor at high temperatures.
  • iodine is a major component of the immune system of the body and is needed for other functions as well.
  • The thyroid requires selenium to allow iodine to function properly.
British Dictionary definitions for iodine


a bluish-black element of the halogen group that sublimates into a violet irritating gas. Its compounds are used in medicine and photography and in dyes. The radioisotope iodine-131 (radioiodine), with a half-life of 8 days, is used in the diagnosis and treatment of thyroid disease. Symbol: I; atomic no: 53; atomic wt: 126.90447; valency: 1, 3, 5, or 7; relative density: 4.93; melting pt: 113.5°C; boiling pt: 184.35°C
Word Origin
C19: from French iode, from Greek iōdēs rust-coloured, but taken to mean violet-coloured, through a mistaken derivation from ion violet
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for iodine

1814, formed by English chemist Sir Humphrey Davy (1778-1829) from French iode "iodine," coined 1812 by French chemist Joseph Louis Gay-Lussac from Greek ioeides "violet-colored," from ion "the violet; dark blue flower," + eidos "appearance" (see -oid). Davy added the chemical suffix -ine (2) to make it analogous with chlorine and fluorine. So called from the color of the vapor given off when the crystals are heated.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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iodine in Medicine

iodine i·o·dine (ī'ə-dīn', -dĭn, -dēn')

  1. Symbol I A poisonous halogen element having compounds used as germicides, antiseptics, and food supplements, with radioactive isotopes, especially I 131, used in thyroid disease diagnosis and therapy. Atomic number 53; atomic weight 126.9045; melting point 113.7°C; boiling point 184.4°C; specific gravity (solid, at 20°C) 4.93; valence 1, 3, 5, 7.

  2. A liquid containing iodine dissolved in ethyl alcohol, used as an antiseptic for wounds.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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iodine in Science
Symbol I
A shiny, grayish-black element of the halogen group. It is corrosive and poisonous and occurs in very small amounts in nature except for seaweed, in which it is abundant. Iodine compounds are used in medicine, antiseptics, and dyes. Atomic number 53; atomic weight 126.9045; melting point 113.5°C; boiling point 184.35°C; specific gravity (solid, at 20°C) 4.93; valence 1, 3, 5, 7. See Periodic Table.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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