A gaseous → chemical element; symbol O. Oxygen is the most abundant element in the → Universe not produced in the → Big Bang, and the third most common overall. It is a colorless, tasteless, odorless gas that is the second most abundant constituent of dry air (20.95% by volume). → Atomic number 8; → atomic weight 15.9994; → melting point -218.4°C; → boiling point -182.962°C; → density 1.429 grams per liter at STP.
Fr. oxygène, coined in 1777 by the Fr. chemist Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier (1743-1794), from Gk. oxys "sharp, acid" + Fr. -gène "something that produces" from Gk. -genes "formation, creation" (cognate with Pers. zâdan "to bring forth, give birth;" Mid.Pers. zâtan; Av. zan- "to bear, give birth to a child, be born," infinitive zazāite, zāta- "born;" cf. Skt. janati "begets, bears;" L. gignere "to beget," nasci "to be born," as above, PIE base *gen- "to give birth, beget").
Oksižen, loan from Fr., as above.
Fr.: combustion de l'oxygène