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[tef-lon] /ˈtɛf lɒn/
Trademark. a fluorocarbon polymer with slippery, nonsticking properties; polytetrafluoroethylene.
characterized by imperviousness to blame or criticism:
a Teflon politician. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for Teflon


trademark polytetrafluoroethylene, when used in nonstick cooking vessels
(facetious) denoting the ability to evade blame: the Teflon president
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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Contemporary definitions for Teflon

untouched by scandal despite evidence of being involved


Reagan was called the 'Teflon president' by Jimmy Carter.

Usage Note

figurative's 21st Century Lexicon
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Word Origin and History for Teflon

commercially important synthetic polymer, 1945, proprietary name registered in U.S. by du Pont, from chemical name (poly)te(tra)fl(uoroethylene) + arbitrary ending -on; popularized as a coating of non-stick pans in 1960s; metaphoric extension, especially in reference to U.S. President Ronald Reagan, is attested from an Aug. 2, 1983, speech on the floor of Congress by Pat Schroeder.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for Teflon

tee off on

verb phrase
  1. To verbally assault someone, esp to reprimand: The critic really teed off on my book, alas (1955+)
  2. To hit the ball very hard: He teed off on it and it went right over the wall (1932+ Baseball)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Related Abbreviations for Teflon


The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for Teflon

a strong, tough, waxy, nonflammable resin belonging to the family of organic polymers, substances composed of large molecules formed by chemical combination of many small ones (monomers) into chains or networks. Known by the abbreviation PTFE or the trade name Teflon, it is distinguished by its complete indifference to attack by almost all chemicals and by its slippery surface; it retains its physical properties over a wide temperature range (-270 to 250 C, or -450 to 480 F). These qualities suit polytetrafluoroethylene to uses in gaskets, bearings, linings for containers and pipes, and parts for valves and pumps that must operate in corrosive environments and for protective coatings on cooking utensils, saw blades, and other articles

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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