Definition of platinum in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpladənəm/


1A precious silvery-white metal, the chemical element of atomic number 78. It was first encountered by the Spanish in South America in the 16th century and is used in jewelry, electrical contacts, laboratory equipment, and industrial catalysts. (Symbol: Pt)
Example sentences
  • Fuel cells contain expensive precious metals like platinum and palladium, they have not been proven to work in extreme weather conditions and the nation's gas stations would need to be reconfigured.
  • This is often a precious metal, although platinum is the metal which is widely used for most catalytic converters.
  • His fund is more than 85% invested in gold-mining shares, with the rest in companies that dig for other precious metals such as platinum and silver.
1.1 [often as modifier] The grayish-white or silvery color of platinum: a platinum wig
More example sentences
  • But it can also be achingly beautiful, its color ranging from platinum to ancient jade, depending on the light it's reflecting.
  • Her hair was a blinding platinum, her eyes a golden color.


go platinum

(Of a recording) achieve sales meriting a platinum disk.
Example sentences
  • Salt ‘N’ Pepa were the only group to go platinum, but they went platinum off a pop record like ‘Push It.’
  • On his return from New York his album is released and quickly goes platinum notching up sales of 300,000.
  • An album goes platinum when it represents 1 million units in sales, with a manufacturer's dollar volume of at least $2 million based on 33.33% of suggested list price.


Early 19th century: alteration of earlier platina, from Spanish, diminutive of plata 'silver'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: plat·i·num

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