Definition of glucose in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈɡlo͞okōs/
Pronunciation: /ˈɡlo͞okōz/


1A simple sugar that is an important energy source in living organisms and is a component of many carbohydrates.
  • A hexose; chemical formula: C6H12O6.
Example sentences
  • Yeasts also contain a natural enzyme which will convert sucrose to its component glucose and fructose.
  • The procedure is based on the cleavage of sucrose by invertase to glucose and fructose.
  • Epidermal cells contained low concentrations of sucrose, glucose and fructose, and no fructan.
1.1A syrup containing glucose and other sugars, made by hydrolysis of starch and used in the food industry.
Example sentences
  • Mix the icing sugar, water and glucose together and bring to the boil.


Mid 19th century: from French, from Greek gleukos 'sweet wine', related to glukus 'sweet'.

  • liquorice from Middle English:

    Contrary to appearances, liquorice has no connection with liquor (Middle English) which comes directly from Latin. The word goes back to a Greek compound formed from glukus ‘sweet’ (source of glucose (mid 19th century)), and rhiza ‘root’ (as in rhizome (mid 19th century)). Liquorice is made by evaporating the juice of the root of certain members of the pea family. Liquorice allsorts were introduced in 1899. The story behind their invention is that a salesman from the company, Bassett's, was visiting a client and showing him samples of the various liquorice sweets that the company made. The client was unimpressed by any of them until the salesman gathered up his samples to leave and in doing so dropped them all, creating a mix of sweets that the client liked.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: glu·cose

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