The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Iron \I"ron\ ([imac]"[u^]rn), n. [OE. iren, AS. [imac]ren,
[imac]sen, [imac]sern; akin to D. ijzer, OS. [imac]sarn, OHG.
[imac]sarn, [imac]san, G. eisen, Icel. [imac]sarn, j[=a]rn,
Sw. & Dan. jern, and perh. to E. ice; cf. Ir. iarann, W.
haiarn, Armor. houarn.]
1. (Chem.) The most common and most useful metallic element,
being of almost universal occurrence, usually in the form
of an oxide (as hematite, magnetite, etc.), or a hydrous
oxide (as limonite, turgite, etc.). It is reduced on an
enormous scale in three principal forms; viz., cast
iron, steel, and wrought iron. Iron usually appears
dark brown, from oxidation or impurity, but when pure, or
on a fresh surface, is a gray or white metal. It is easily
oxidized (rusted) by moisture, and is attacked by many
corrosive agents. Symbol Fe (Latin Ferrum). Atomic number
26, atomic weight 55.847. Specific gravity, pure iron,
7.86; cast iron, 7.1. In magnetic properties, it is
superior to all other substances.
Note: The value of iron is largely due to the facility with
which it can be worked. Thus, when heated it is
malleable and ductile, and can be easily welded and
forged at a high temperature. As cast iron, it is
easily fusible; as steel, is very tough, and (when
tempered) very hard and elastic. Chemically, iron is
grouped with cobalt and nickel. Steel is a variety of
iron containing more carbon than wrought iron, but less
that cast iron. It is made either from wrought iron, by
roasting in a packing of carbon (cementation) or from
cast iron, by burning off the impurities in a Bessemer
converter (then called Bessemer steel), or directly
from the iron ore (as in the Siemens rotatory and
2. An instrument or utensil made of iron; -- chiefly in
composition; as, a flatiron, a smoothing iron, etc.
My young soldier, put up your iron. --Shak.
3. pl. Fetters; chains; handcuffs; manacles.
Four of the sufferers were left to rot in irons.
4. Strength; power; firmness; inflexibility; as, to rule with
a rod of iron.
5. (Golf) An iron-headed club with a deep face, chiefly used
in making approaches, lifting a ball over hazards, etc.
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]
Bar iron. See Wrought iron (below).
Bog iron, bog ore; limonite. See Bog ore, under Bog.
Cast iron (Metal.), an impure variety of iron, containing
from three to six percent of carbon, part of which is
united with a part of the iron, as a carbide, and the rest
is uncombined, as graphite. It there is little free
carbon, the product is white iron; if much of the carbon
has separated as graphite, it is called gray iron. See
also Cast iron, in the Vocabulary.
Fire irons. See under Fire, n.
Gray irons. See under Fire, n.
Gray iron. See Cast iron (above).
It irons (Naut.), said of a sailing vessel, when, in
tacking, she comes up head to the wind and will not fill
away on either tack.
Magnetic iron. See Magnetite.
Malleable iron (Metal.), iron sufficiently pure or soft to
be capable of extension under the hammer; also, specif., a
kind of iron produced by removing a portion of the carbon
or other impurities from cast iron, rendering it less
brittle, and to some extent malleable.
Meteoric iron (Chem.), iron forming a large, and often the
chief, ingredient of meteorites. It invariably contains a
small amount of nickel and cobalt. Cf. Meteorite.
Pig iron, the form in which cast iron is made at the blast
furnace, being run into molds, called pigs.
Reduced iron. See under Reduced.
Specular iron. See Hematite.
Too many irons in the fire, too many objects or tasks
requiring the attention at once.
White iron. See Cast iron (above).
Wrought iron (Metal.), the purest form of iron commonly
known in the arts, containing only about half of one per
cent of carbon. It is made either directly from the ore,
as in the Catalan forge or bloomery, or by purifying
(puddling) cast iron in a reverberatory furnace or
refinery. It is tough, malleable, and ductile. When formed
into bars, it is called bar iron.
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Reduce \Re*duce"\ (r[-e]*d[=u]s"), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Reduced
(-d[=u]st"),; p. pr. & vb. n. Reducing (-d[=u]"s[i^]ng).]
[L. reducere, reductum; pref. red-. re-, re- + ducere to
lead. See Duke, and cf. Redoubt, n.]
1. To bring or lead back to any former place or condition.
And to his brother's house reduced his wife.
The sheep must of necessity be scattered, unless the
great Shephered of souls oppose, or some of his
delegates reduce and direct us. --Evelyn.
2. To bring to any inferior state, with respect to rank,
size, quantity, quality, value, etc.; to diminish; to
lower; to degrade; to impair; as, to reduce a sergeant to
the ranks; to reduce a drawing; to reduce expenses; to
reduce the intensity of heat. "An ancient but reduced
family." --Sir W. Scott.
Nothing so excellent but a man may fasten upon
something belonging to it, to reduce it.
Their foe to misery beneath their fears. --Milton.
Hester Prynne was shocked at the condition to which
she found the clergyman reduced. --Hawthorne.
3. To bring to terms; to humble; to conquer; to subdue; to
capture; as, to reduce a province or a fort.
4. To bring to a certain state or condition by grinding,
pounding, kneading, rubbing, etc.; as, to reduce a
substance to powder, or to a pasty mass; to reduce fruit,
wood, or paper rags, to pulp.
It were but right
And equal to reduce me to my dust. --Milton.
5. To bring into a certain order, arrangement,
classification, etc.; to bring under rules or within
certain limits of descriptions and terms adapted to use in
computation; as, to reduce animals or vegetables to a
class or classes; to reduce a series of observations in
astronomy; to reduce language to rules.
(a) To change, as numbers, from one denomination into
another without altering their value, or from one
denomination into others of the same value; as, to
reduce pounds, shillings, and pence to pence, or to
reduce pence to pounds; to reduce days and hours to
minutes, or minutes to days and hours.
(b) To change the form of a quantity or expression without
altering its value; as, to reduce fractions to their
lowest terms, to a common denominator, etc.
7. (Chem.) To add an electron to an atom or ion.
Specifically: To remove oxygen from; to deoxidize.
(Metallurgy) To bring to the metallic state by separating
from combined oxygen and impurities; as, metals are
reduced from their ores. (Chem.) To combine with, or to
subject to the action of, hydrogen or any other reducing
agent; as, ferric iron is reduced to ferrous iron;
aldehydes can be reduced to alcohols by lithium hydride;
-- opposed to oxidize.
[1913 Webster +PJC]
8. (Med.) To restore to its proper place or condition, as a
displaced organ or part; as, to reduce a dislocation, a
fracture, or a hernia.
Reduced iron (Chem.), metallic iron obtained through
deoxidation of an oxide of iron by exposure to a current
of hydrogen or other reducing agent. When hydrogen is used
the product is called also iron by hydrogen.
To reduce an equation (Alg.), to bring the unknown quantity
by itself on one side, and all the known quantities on the
other side, without destroying the equation.
To reduce an expression (Alg.), to obtain an equivalent
expression of simpler form.
To reduce a square (Mil.), to reform the line or column
from the square.
Syn: To diminish; lessen; decrease; abate; shorten; curtail;
impair; lower; subject; subdue; subjugate; conquer.