noun Chemistry, British.

1935–40; by shortening

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World English Dictionary
polythene (ˈpɒlɪˌθiːn)
Systematic name: polyethene, Also called: polyethylene any one of various light thermoplastic materials made from ethylene with properties depending on the molecular weight of the polymer. The common forms are a waxy flexible plastic (low-density polythene) and a tougher rigid more crystalline form (high-density polythene). Polythene is used for packaging, moulded articles, pipes and tubing, insulation, textiles, and coatings on metal

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Example sentences
Instead, little white markers cut out of polythene bags are still planted along
  the narrow rubble lane to the cemetery.
These people are still using plastic polythene bags to take away the foods and
The environmentally friendly version of polythene might not be so friendly
  after all.
Most of our students carry their books in polythene bags.
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