palladium

palladium

[puh-ley-dee-uhm]
noun Chemistry.
a rare metallic element of the platinum group, silver-white, ductile and malleable, harder and fusing more readily than platinum: used chiefly as a catalyst and in dental and other alloys. Symbol: Pd; atomic weight: 106.4; atomic number: 46; specific gravity: 12 at 20°C.

Origin:
special use of Palladium; named (1803) after the asteroid Pallas, then newly discovered; see -ium

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Palladium

[puh-ley-dee-uhm]
noun, plural Palladia [puh-ley-dee-uh] .
1.
Also, Palladion [puh-ley-dee-on] . a statue of Athena, especially one on the citadel of Troy on which the safety of the city was supposed to depend.
2.
(usually lowercase) anything believed to provide protection or safety; safeguard.

Origin:
< Latin Palladium < Greek Palládion, noun use of neuter of Palládios of Pallas, equivalent to Pallad- (stem of Pallás) Pallas + -ios adj. suffix

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World English Dictionary
palladium1 (pəˈleɪdɪəm)
 
n
a ductile malleable silvery-white element of the platinum metal group occurring principally in nickel-bearing ores: used as a hydrogenation catalyst and, alloyed with gold, in jewellery. Symbol: Pd; atomic no: 46; atomic wt: 106.42; valency: 2, 3, or 4; relative density: 1202; melting pt: 1555°C; boiling pt: 2964°C
 
[C19: named after the asteroid Pallas, at the time (1803) a recent discovery]

palladium2 (pəˈleɪdɪəm)
 
n
something believed to ensure protection; safeguard
 
[C17: after the Palladium]

Palladium (pəˈleɪdɪəm)
 
n
a statue of Pallas Athena, esp the one upon which the safety of Troy depended

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Word Origin & History

palladium
c.1600, "safeguard," originally (late 14c.) "sacred image of Pallas Athene," from L. palladium, from Gk. Palladion, neut. of Palladios "of Pallas." It stood in the citadel of Troy and the safety of the city was believed to depend on it. As the name of a metallic element,
it was coined 1803 by discoverer, William Hyde Wollaston (1766-1828), from Pallas, name of an asteroid discovered the previous year (by Ger. astronomer Olbers) and named for the goddess.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

palladium pal·la·di·um (pə-lā'dē-əm)
n.
Symbol Pd
A soft ductile metallic element occurring naturally with platinum, especially in gold, nickel, and copper ores, and used as a catalyst in hydrogenation. Atomic number 46; atomic weight 106.4; melting point 1,555°C; boiling point 2,963°C; specific gravity 12.02 (20°C); valence 2, 3, 4.

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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
palladium   (pə-lā'dē-əm)  Pronunciation Key 
Symbol Pd
A malleable, ductile, grayish-white metallic element that occurs naturally with platinum. It is used as a catalyst in hydrogenation and in alloys for making electrical contacts and jewelry. Atomic number 46; atomic weight 106.4; melting point 1,552°C; boiling point 3,140°C; specific gravity 12.02 (20°C); valence 2, 3, 4. See Periodic Table.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

palladium

in Greek religion, image of the goddess Pallas (Athena), especially the archaic wooden statue of the goddess that was preserved in the citadel of Troy as a pledge of the safety of the city. As long as the statue was kept safe within Troy, the city could not be conquered. It was said that Zeus, the king of the gods, threw the statue down from heaven when the city of Ilium (Troy) was founded and that the Greek warriors Odysseus and Diomedes carried it off from the temple of Athena in Troy, thus making the Greek capture of Troy possible. Many cities in Greece and Italy claimed to possess the genuine Trojan Palladium, but it was particularly identified with the statue brought to Italy by the hero Aeneas after Troy's destruction and preserved in the shrine of the goddess Vesta at Rome. The Palladium was a common subject in Greek art, as was its theft in literature.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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