Never Miss a word!
Kids need Science
Kids Need Science is devoted to demystifying and explaining science, technology, engineering and math words, names, and concepts. Check back often for a science, technology, engineering or math word defined and explained every day.
featured-on-pbsparents-button
.
MAP OF VISITORS WORLDWIDE
Tip Jar. This blog is completely self-funded and is 100% original content. Consider a small donation to help buy dictionaries and images to use on this site. Thanks!

The word alcohol has a long and surprising history. Yesterday the words antimony and stibnite were derived-going back 5,000 years to the Ancient Egyptian eye make up known as kohl. Alcohol first entered English in the 1540s meaning a fine powder produced by sublimation, which derived from the Medeival Latin word alcohol which was borrowed from the Arabic al-kuhul meaning the powdered ore of antimony. The word kohl (kuhul) had been used for thousands of years to denote various types of powdered ores used for eye makeup, including both antimony and lead sulfide, both of which were poisonous to humans. When the word alcohol arrived in wide use in English, its use was confined to eye cosmetic for over a hundred years-it wasn’t until the 1670s that its use was widened to include any sublimated substance, though it still mostly referred to powders. It wasn’t used for the drink until the 1750s when it was used as an adjective-as alcohol of wine-to indicate the intoxicating agent in wine. Another hundred years would pass before organic chemists would classify alcohols as a group of compounds with a hydroxyl functional group (-OH) bound to a carbon atom.

The kohl container pictured above is marked with the name of the Egyptian Pharaoh Queen Tiye (c. 1398 BC – 1338 BC, also spelled Taia, Tiy and Tiyi), wife of the great pharaoh Amenhotep III, whose cartouche also appears.

Image appears courtesy Keith Schengili-Roberts, who photographed it at the Brooklyn Museum, used with permission under a Creative Commons 3.0 license. Image of ethanol, commonly referred to as pure alcohol, grain alcohol, etc, the primary intoxicant in alcoholic beverages.

  1. schrodingersschrody reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  2. jackieshineee reblogged this from alfredothebeast
  3. alfredothebeast reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  4. maladaptivetendencies reblogged this from greatmindsofscience
  5. imhumananditsearly reblogged this from greatmindsofscience
  6. thejavaman reblogged this from greatmindsofscience
  7. numantinecitizen reblogged this from greatmindsofscience
  8. physicsshiny reblogged this from greatmindsofscience
  9. greatmindsofscience reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  10. thisisyourfuturearchive reblogged this from designationbeast
  11. designationbeast reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  12. scilab7 reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  13. derekguinn33 reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  14. auroradewipytaloka reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  15. malikmlwilliams reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  16. giraffeseyeview reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  17. michaelvandenberg reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  18. giveemtheoldkazzledazzle reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  19. dulcetmurmurs reblogged this from lettersonacorkboard
  20. valkyrierisen reblogged this from karethdreams and added:
    Omg I love this.
  21. lettersonacorkboard reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  22. thegeekentitlement reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  23. hydrosassic-acid reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  24. alteredxstates reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  25. cluelessdarling reblogged this from kidsneedscience
  26. kuraicross reblogged this from kidsneedscience