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Friday word: Guttapercha

gut·ta–per·cha

noun \ˌgə-tə-ˈpər-chə\

: a tough plastic substance from the latex of several Malaysian trees (genera Payena and Palaquium) of the sapodilla (Sapotaceae) family that resembles rubber but contains more resin and is used especially as insulation and in dentistry in temporary fillings and as a permanent filling in root canals.


Etymology:

Malay gĕtah-pĕrcha, from gĕtah sap, latex + pĕrcha scrap, rag

First Known Use: 1845

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
theidolhands
Feb. 28th, 2014 11:30 am (UTC)
Well, I'll be danged. Definitely had some of that in mouth and never knew it was this!
med_cat
Feb. 28th, 2014 10:55 pm (UTC)
I'd seen this word in Russian before, in 19th-century literature, in the meaning of "rubber", so when I spotted the word on a piece of dental equipment ("Warning: only use one piece of guttapercha at a time"), it attracted my attention...:)
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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