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Chemical vs Substance - What's the difference?

chemical | substance |

As nouns the difference between chemical and substance

is that chemical is any specific chemical element or chemical compound while substance is physical matter; material.

As an adjective chemical

is (label) of or relating to alchemy.




  • (label) Of or relating to alchemy.
  • Of or relating to chemistry.
  • Of or relating to a material or processes not commonly found in nature or in a particular product.
  • Derived terms

    * technochemical


    (en noun)
  • Any specific chemical element or chemical compound.
  • (label) An artificial chemical compound.
  • I color my hair with henna, not chemicals .
  • (label) An addictive drug.
  • Usage notes

    * The noun is frequently used in a slang and more specific non-technical way (2nd and 3rd definition) by the general public. Chemists and those who understand chemistry may gravitate toward the first, but the term "substance" is preferred usage.

    Derived terms

    * antichemical * chemical abortion * chemical affinity * chemical agent * chemical beam epitaxy * chemical biology * chemical bond * chemical castration * chemical change * chemical clock * chemical composition * chemical database * chemical decomposition * chemical defense * chemical dependency * chemical depilatory * chemical dermatitis * chemical ecology * chemical element * chemical energy * chemical engineering * chemical fingerprint * chemical hazard * chemical horn * chemical indicator * chemical industry * chemical kinetics * chemical laser * chemical law * chemical messenger * chemical oceanography * chemical pathology * chemical peel * chemical peritonitis * chemical physics * chemical plant * chemical reaction * chemical reactor * chemical sensitivity * chemical series * chemical shift * chemical toilet * chemical weapon

    See also

    * molecule * reagent




    Alternative forms

    * substaunce (archaic)


    (en noun)
  • Physical matter; material.
  • * 1699 , , Heads designed for an essay on conversations
  • Study gives strength to the mind; conversation, grace: the first apt to give stiffness, the other suppleness: one gives substance and form to the statue, the other polishes it.
  • * {{quote-magazine, date=2013-07-20, volume=408, issue=8845, magazine=(The Economist)
  • , title= Welcome to the plastisphere , passage=Plastics are energy-rich substances , which is why many of them burn so readily. Any organism that could unlock and use that energy would do well in the Anthropocene. Terrestrial bacteria and fungi which can manage this trick are already familiar to experts in the field.}}
  • The essential part of anything; the most vital part.
  • * (John Dryden) (1631-1700)
  • Heroic virtue did his actions guide, / And he the substance , not the appearance, chose.
  • * Bishop Burnet
  • This edition is the same in substance with the Latin.
  • * (Edmund Burke) (1729-1797)
  • It is insolent in words, in manner; but in substance it is not only insulting, but alarming.
  • Substantiality; solidity; firmness.
  • Material possessions; estate; property; resources.
  • * Bible, (w) xv. 13
  • And there wasted his substance with riotous living.
  • * (William Shakespeare) (1564-1616)
  • Thy substance , valued at the highest rate, / Cannot amount unto a hundred marks.
  • * (Jonathan Swift) (1667–1745)
  • We are destroying many thousand lives, and exhausting our substance , but not for our own interest.
  • Drugs (illegal narcotics)
  • (theology) Hypostasis.
  • See also

    * style 1000 English basic words ----