General English

General Science

  • noun a substance that is not a liquid or a solid, which will completely fill the container it occupies, and which becomes liquid when it is cooled
  • noun a substance found underground, or produced from coal, and used to cook or heat

Cars & Driving

  • noun a state of matter, like air, which has no definite shape or volume


  • A fluid (in the form of air) with neither independent shapes nor volume, that can expand indefinitely.


  • A state of matter characterized by very low density, comparatively large changes in volume as pressure and temperature vary, and the tendency to assume the shape of its container. Gases move freely past one another, and diffuse readily into other gases. A gas may be a chemical element, such as argon or oxygen, or a compound, such as carbon dioxide. The other physical states in which matter is known to exist are solid (1), liquid, plasma, and Bose-Einstein condensates.


  • noun a substance such as nitrogen, carbon dioxide or air, which is neither solid nor fluid at ordinary temperatures and can expand infinitely
  • noun gas which accumulates in the stomach or alimentary canal and causes pain


  • noun a substance which behaves like air by completely filling the space which it occupies.
  • noun a chemical weapon in the form of gas, used to irritate the skin, to blind, to choke or to kill
  • verb to use poisonous gas as a weapon


  • noun something which is exhilarating, stimulating or highly enjoyable. In the phrases ‘it’s a gas’ and ‘what a gas!’, this word became one of the clichés of the hippy vocabulary. It probably originated in American black street slang of the late 1950s, inspired by the exhilarating effects of nitrous oxide (laughing gas), although the same word, with the same meaning and origin, already existed in Irish speech.
  • noun an idle conversation, a period of empty chatter


  • acronym forGovernment Accountancy Service
    (written as GAS)
  • noun part of HM Treasury, a service whose remit it is to ensure that best accounting practice is observed and conducted across the whole of the Civil Service.

Origin & History of “gas”

We get gas from a Flemish pronunciation of Greek kháos ‘chasm, void’ (a derivative of Indo-European *ghəw- ‘hollow’, and source of English chaos (15th c.)). The Flemish chemist J B van Helmont (1577–1644) used the Greek word to denote an occult principal, supposedly an ultra-refined form of water, which he postulated as existing in all matter. The sound of Greek kh is roughly equivalent of that represented by Dutch and Flemish g, and so the word came to be spelled gas. Its modern application to any indefinitely expanding substance dates from the late 18th century.

The derivative gasoline, source of American English gas ‘petrol’, dates from the late 19th century.