glass

Definitions

General English

General Science

  • noun any solid with a noncrystalline structure
  • noun a substance made from sand and soda or lime, usually transparent and used for making windows, bottles and other objects

Cars & Driving

  • noun a window pane

Construction

  • A hard, brittle, inorganic product, ordinarily transparent or translucent, made by the fusion of silica, flux, and a stabilizer, and cooled without crystallizing. Glass can be rolled, blown, cast, or pressed for a variety of uses.

Electronics

  • A hard, amorphous, and usually brittle and transparent substance composed of silica combined with other substances. To prepare a glass, all materials are fused at a high temperature, then cooled in a manner that prevents crystallization. flint glass, for instance, contains silica, lead oxide, and potassium carbonate. Depending on the desired properties, any of various substances may be added. For example, added boron provides more thermal and electrical resistance, barium increases the refractive index, and cerium increases the absorption of infrared rays.

Food

  • ice cream

Slang

  • noun diamonds or other gems in underworld argot

Travel

  • noun a vessel made of glass used especially for drinking

Wine

  • an object that holds wine so that it can be tasted, enjoyed and drunk. The shape of the glass is very important, particularly when tasting at a professional level: the glass should be clear to show the true colour of the wine and the shape of the bowl should taper in slightly at the top to allow the scents from the wine to concentrate there when the taster smells the wine. There is an ISO (International Organization for Standardization) standard shape and size of glass that is recommended for tasting wine. The only glass not in this shape is a flute-style tall, thin glass for drinking Champagne, since the older-style wide, shallow glasses for Champagne allow the bubbles to disperse too quickly.

Origin & History of “glass”

The making of glass goes back to ancient Egyptian times, and so most of the words for it in the various Indo-European languages are of considerable antiquity. In those days, it was far easier to make coloured glass than the familiar clear glass of today. In particular, Roman glass was standardly bluish-green, and many words for ‘glass’ originated in colour terms signifying ‘blue’ or ‘green’. In the case of glass, its distant ancestor was Indo-European *gel- or *ghel-, which produced a host of colour adjectives ranging in application from ‘grey’ through ‘blue’ and ‘green’ to ‘yellow’. among its descendants was west Germanic *glasam, which gave German, Dutch, Swedish, and Danish glas and English glass. A secondary semantic development of the word’s base, glass being a shiny substance, was ‘shine, gleam’; this probably lies behind English glare (13th c.), whose primary sense is ‘shine dazzlingly’ (the change of s to r is a well-known phonetic phenomenon, termed ‘rhoticization’). Irish gloine ‘glass’ also comes from Indo-European *g(h)el-, and French verre and Italian vetro ‘glass’ go back to Latin vitrum ‘glass’ (source of English vitreous), which also meant ‘woad’, a plant which gives a blue dye.

The use of the plural glasses for ‘spectacles’ dates from the mid-17th century. The verb glaze (14th c.) is an English derivative of glass.
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