Aether



(defs 3–5).
(initial capital letter) the ancient Greek personification of the clear upper air of the sky.
Also called diethyl ether, diethyl oxide, ethyl ether, ethyl oxide, sulfuric ether. Chemistry, Pharmacology. a colorless, highly volatile, flammable liquid, C 4 H 10 O, having an aromatic odor and sweet, burning taste, derived from ethyl alcohol by the action of sulfuric acid: used as a solvent and, formerly, as an inhalant anesthetic.
Chemistry. (formerly) one of a class of compounds in which two organic groups are attached directly to an oxygen atom, having the general formula ROR.
the upper regions of space; the clear sky; the heavens.
the medium supposed by the ancients to fill the upper regions of space.
Physics. a hypothetical substance supposed to occupy all space, postulated to account for the propagation of electromagnetic radiation through space.
Historical Examples

Or we can accept Professor Lodge’s theory, that aether is made up of positive and negative electricity.
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

This problem will also be dealt with from the standpoint of our new conception of the aether.
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

Young assumed different densities for the aether near bodies owing to its being attracted by those bodies (Art. 45).
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

It has already been pointed out in Art. 29 that aether is matter.
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

In these operations the elasticity of the aether is called into play.
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

We shall see that this is so when we come to deal with the density of the aether.
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

Different bodies, when heated to the same temperature, possess very different powers of agitating the aether: some are.
Fragments of science, V. 1-2 John Tyndall

If aether be matter, therefore, then it must also possess inertia.
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

That the aether is universal is proved by the phenomena of light.
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

Let us therefore revert to our hypothesis of the aether as given in Art. 45.
Aether and Gravitation William George Hooper

noun
a variant spelling of ether (sense 3), ether (sense 4), ether (sense 5)
noun
Also called diethyl ether, ethyl ether, ethoxyethane. a colourless volatile highly flammable liquid with a characteristic sweetish odour, made by the reaction of sulphuric acid with ethanol: used as a solvent and anaesthetic. Formula: C2H5OC2H5
any of a class of organic compounds with the general formula ROR′ where R and R′ are alkyl groups, as in diethyl ether C2H5OC2H5
the ether, the hypothetical medium formerly believed to fill all space and to support the propagation of electromagnetic waves
(Greek myth) the upper regions of the atmosphere; clear sky or heaven
a rare word for air
n.

late 14c., “upper regions of space,” from Old French ether and directly from Latin aether “the upper pure, bright air,” from Greek aither “upper air; bright, purer air; the sky,” from aithein “to burn, shine,” from PIE root *aidh- “to burn” (see edifice).

In ancient cosmology, the element that filled all space beyond the sphere of the moon, constituting the substance of the stars and planets. Conceived of as a purer form of fire or air, or as a fifth element. From 17c.-19c., it was the scientific word for an assumed “frame of reference” for forces in the universe, perhaps without material properties. The concept was shaken by the Michelson-Morley experiment (1887) and discarded after the Theory of Relativity won acceptance, but before it went it gave rise to the colloquial use of ether for “the radio” (1899).

The name also was bestowed c.1730 (Frobenius; in English by 1757) on a volatile chemical compound known since 14c. for its lightness and lack of color (its anesthetic properties weren’t fully established until 1842).

ether e·ther (ē’thər)
n.

Any of a class of organic compounds in which two hydrocarbon groups are linked by an oxygen atom.

An anesthetic ether, especially diethyl ether.

ether
(ē’thər)

An organic compound in which two hydrocarbon groups are linked by an oxygen atom, having the general structure ROR’, where R and R’ are the two hydrocarbon groups. At room temperature, ethers are pleasant-smelling liquids resembling alcohols but less dense and less soluble in water. Ethers are part of many naturally occurring organic compounds, such as starches and sugars, and are widely used in industry and in making pharmaceuticals.

A colorless, flammable liquid used as a solvent and formerly used as an anesthetic. Ether consists of two ethyl groups joined by an oxygen atom. Also called diethyl ether, ethyl ether. Chemical formula: C4H10O.

A hypothetical medium formerly believed to permeate all space, and through which light and other electromagnetic radiation were thought to move. The existence of ether was disproved by the American physicists Albert Michelson and Edward Morley in 1887.

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    (defs 3–5). (initial capital letter) the ancient Greek personification of the clear upper air of the sky. light, airy, or tenuous: an ethereal world created through the poetic imagination. extremely delicate or refined: ethereal beauty. heavenly or celestial: gone to his ethereal home. of or relating to the upper regions of space. Chemistry. pertaining to, […]

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    (defs 3–5). (initial capital letter) the ancient Greek personification of the clear upper air of the sky. noun a variant spelling of ether (sense 3), ether (sense 4), ether (sense 5)



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