A type of still, an apparatus used in the process of distillation. Alembics were employed in chemistry and biomedical laboratories as well as in distilling cognac. By extension, "alembic" is anything that refines or transmutes as if by distillation. For example, the alembic of the surgeon's mind. From the Arabic al-anbiq meaning "the still" from the Greek word for a still ("ambix"). In Europe, the Arabic word was transmuted in Medieval Latin to "alembicum." and later shortened in English to "alembic."

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alem·bic ə-'lem-bik n an apparatus formerly used in distillation

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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  • Alembic — A*lem bic ([.a]*l[e^]m b[i^]k), n. [F. alambic (cf. Sp. alambique), Ar. al anb[=i]q, fr. Gr. a mbix cup, cap of a still. The cap or head was the alembic proper. Cf. {Limbec}.] An apparatus formerly used in distillation, usually made of glass or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Alembic — (Alambik, arab. franz.), der Helm der alten Destillationsapparate …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • alembic — ALEMBIC. Voyez Alambic …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

  • alembic — (n.) late 14c., from M.Fr. alambic (13c.), via Old Spanish, from Arabic al anbiq distilling flask, from Gk. ambix cup, of unknown, possibly Semitic, origin. Often spelled limbeck 15c. 17c …   Etymology dictionary

  • alembic — Alembic, Chapelle de voirre à distiller eaües, Clibanus vitreus …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • alembic — [ə lem′bik] n. [ME & OFr alambic < ML alambicus < Ar al anbīq < al, the + anbīq, distilling flask < Gr ambix, a cup] 1. an apparatus of glass or metal, like a retort, formerly used for distilling 2. anything that refines or purifies …   English World dictionary

  • Alembic — An alembic (from Arabic Al inbiq الأنبيق) is an alchemical still consisting of two retorts connected by a tube. Technically, the alembic is only the upper part (the capital or still head ), while the lower part is the cucurbit, but the word was… …   Wikipedia

  • Alembic —  Ne doit pas être confondu avec Alambic. Guitare Basse customisée Alembic Dragon s Breath Alembic Inc., est un fabricant américain de guitares électrique …   Wikipédia en Français

  • alembic — noun Etymology: Middle English, from Middle French & Medieval Latin; Middle French alambic & Medieval Latin alembicum, from Arabic al anbīq, from al the + anbīq still, from Late Greek ambik , ambix alembic, from Greek, cap of a still Date: 14th… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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