Definition of cacodyl in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈkakə(ʊ)dʌɪl/
Pronunciation: /ˈkakə(ʊ)dɪl/


[mass noun] Chemistry
1A malodorous, toxic, spontaneously flammable liquid compound containing arsenic.
  • Chemical formula: ((CH3)2As)2.
Example sentences
  • The investigation and identification of cacodyl by Bunsen in 1848 was to mark the beginning of the era of organometallic chemistry.
  • She had previously tackled cacodyl, ogygian and zeitgeber.
  • There he distilled arsenic with potassium acetate to arrive at a cacodyl (also known as alkarsine or Cadet's liquid), a malodorous compound that the named after the Greek term for ‘stinky’ (kak dl s).
1.1 [as modifier] Of or denoting the radical —As(CH3)2, derived from cacodyl.


Mid 19th century: from Greek kakōdēs 'stinking' (from kakos 'bad') + -yl.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: caco|dyl

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.