Par"a*dox`y(?), n. 1. A paradoxical statement; a paradox.
2. The quality or state of being paradoxical.
Par"af*fine(pr"f*fn or pr"f*fn) }, n. [F. paraffine, fr. L. parum too little + affinis akin. So named in allusion to its chemical inactivity.] (Chem.) A white waxy substance, resembling spermaceti, tasteless and odorless, and obtained from coal tar, wood tar, petroleum, etc., by distillation. It is used in candles, as a sealing agent (such as in canning of preserves), as a waterproofing agent, as an illuminant and as a lubricant. It is very inert, not being acted upon by most of the strong chemical reagents. It was formerly regarded as a definite compound, but is now known to be a complex mixture of several higher hydrocarbons of the methane or marsh-gas series; hence, by extension, any substance, whether solid, liquid, or gaseous, of the same chemical series; thus gasoline, coal gas and kerosene consist largely of paraffins.
[1913 Webster +PJC]
In the present chemical usage this word is spelled paraffin, but in commerce it is commonly spelled paraffine.
Native paraffin. See Ozocerite. --
Paraffin series. See
Methane series, under Methane.
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Tue 18th December 2018