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penicillin

Line breaks: peni|cil¦lin
Pronunciation: /pɛnɪˈsɪlɪn
 
/

Definition of penicillin in English:

noun

[mass noun]
1An antibiotic or group of antibiotics produced naturally by certain blue moulds, now usually prepared synthetically. Penicillin was discovered in 1928 and during the Second World War became the first antibiotic to be used by doctors: patients who are allergic to penicillin [count noun]: penicillins and cephalosporins
More example sentences
  • Major classes of antibiotics include tetracyclines, aminoglycosides, penicillins, cephalosporins, fluoroquinolones, streptogramins, sulfonamides, and erythromycins.
  • The antibiotics used were mainly cephalosporins, penicillins, fluoroquinolones, aminoglycosides, tetracyclines and antituberculosis drugs.
  • Most antibiotics such as penicillins, cyclosporines, and aminoglycosides can be used safely during pregnancy, but tetracyclines should be avoided.
2A blue mould of a type that produces penicillin.

Origin

from the modern Latin genus name Penicillium (see penicillium) + -in1.

More
  • pen from (Middle English):

    The earliest pens for writing were made from a feather with its quill sharpened and split to form a nib which was dipped in ink. The origin of pen reflects this, going back to Latin penna ‘feather’. The idea that the pen is mightier than the sword appeared in the works of the Latin author Cicero in the 2nd century bc. The origin of Old English pen in the sense of an animal enclosure is not known. See also panache, pin

Words that rhyme with penicillin

Enniskillen, villein

Definition of penicillin in:

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