Definition of nitrile in English:


Syllabification: ni·trile
Pronunciation: /ˈnītril, -trīl


  • An organic compound containing a cyanide group —CN bound to an alkyl group.
    More example sentences
    • Secondary and tertiary amides are prepared by reacting primary amides or nitriles with organic acids.
    • In this reaction, an ester joins with another ester, a ketone, or a nitrile.
    • They also rejected bridgehead double bonds and allenes, and (to my surprise) only allowed triple bonds for nitriles (so no acetylenes.)


mid 19th century: from nitr- (from niter) + -ile (alteration of -yl).

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