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nippy sharply cold; frosty. [2 definitions]
nirvana (often cap.) in Buddhism or Hinduism, a state of blissful peace and harmony beyond the sufferings and passions of individual existence; state of oneness with eternal spirit. [2 definitions]
Nisan the seventh month of the Jewish lunisolar calendar, occurring from late March through early April in the Gregorian calendar.
Nisei (sometimes l.c.) an offspring of Japanese immigrant parents who is raised and educated in the United States or Canada. (See Issei, Kibei, Sansei.)
nit the egg or young of a louse or other parasitic insect.
niter a whitish salt, potassium nitrate or sodium nitrate, used in gunpowder or fertilizer; saltpeter.
nitpick to be excessively concerned with or critical of small details or faults.
nitrate a salt or ester containing nitric acid. [3 definitions]
nitre (chiefly British) variant of niter.
nitric of, pertaining to, containing, or derived from nitrogen.
nitric acid a colorless, volatile, highly corrosive acid with strong oxidizing properties.
nitride a compound of nitrogen and one other less electronegative element.
nitrify to oxidize into nitrous or nitric acid or a nitrite or nitrate, as by bacterial action in soil. [2 definitions]
nitrite an ester or salt of nitrous acid.
nitro- containing nitrogen. [2 definitions]
nitrobenzene a toxic liquid or crystalline compound, used to make aniline, insulating materials, and solvents.
nitrocellulose a cottonlike substance made from cellulose treated with nitric and sulfuric acids and used in plastics, explosives, and lacquers.
nitrogen a chemical element that has seven protons in each nucleus and that occurs as a colorless, odorless gas that comprises about eighty percent of the earth's atmosphere, or in important compounds such as nitrates, proteins, nucleic acids, and ammonia. (symbol: N) [3 definitions]
nitrogen cycle the continuous natural cycle by which nitrogen passes from air to soil to organisms and back to air.
nitrogen dioxide a slightly toxic gas composed of nitrogen and oxygen, found in smog and automotive exhaust, and synthesized for use in nitration and oxidation, and as a catalyst.
nitrogen fixation any of various processes to convert atmospheric nitrogen into compounds with other elements, either naturally, as by bacteria, in leguminous plants or the soil, or chemically for industrial use, fertilizers, and the like.