Definition of formaldehyde in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /fôrˈmaldihīd/ Pronunciation: /fərmˈaldəˌhīd/


A colorless pungent gas in solution made by oxidizing methanol.
  • Alternative name: methanal; chemical formula: CH2O.
Example sentences
  • Set on fire, these items release formaldehyde, polyvinyl chloride, and dioxins.
  • They are produced by the polymerization reaction of phenol and formaldehyde.
  • Bleach, ethyl alcohol, and formaldehyde can kill the virus in the environment.


Late 19th century: blend of formic acid and aldehyde.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: form·al·de·hyde

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.