Definition of penicillium in English:


Syllabification: pen·i·cil·li·um
Pronunciation: /ˌpenəˈsilēəm

noun (plural penicillia /-ˈsilēə/)

A blue mold that is common on food, being added to some cheeses and used sometimes to produce penicillin.
More example sentences
  • This is because the cheese maker has to let the air inside the cheese for the penicillium (the blue cheese mold) to develop.
  • Since 1941, when the first bacterial infection was cured with a concoction derived from the fungus penicillium, we've depended on antibiotics to be there when we're sick.
  • Identifying penicillia is relatively easy for a trained microbiologist; certifying that the substance ‘dissolving’ bacteria on petri dishes is true penicillin is quite a different matter.


mid 19th century: modern Latin, from Latin penicillus 'paintbrush' (because of the brushlike fruiting bodies).

Definition of penicillium in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day demoralize
Pronunciation: dɪˈmɒrəlʌɪz
cause (someone) to lose confidence or hope