Part of speech: noun

An inflammable oily liquid exuding from the earth; coal oil.

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Usage examples "petroleum":

  1. What we see here is a mere trace of surface oozing, found in many places, and it generally indicates petroleum at some depth, but whether in sufficient quantities to pay cannot be determined without boring." - "The Wonder Island Boys: Exploring the Island", Roger Thompson Finlay.
  2. A condensed translation of the method employed by Schlechtendal is given by J. W. Douglas in the Entomologists' Monthly Magazine for December, 1878, which I quote: The heat is derived from the flame of a spirit or petroleum lamp. - "Directions for Collecting and Preserving Insects", C. V. Riley.
  3. When petroleum was discovered in the fields near Pittsburgh, some ten years ago, Mr. Westinghouse was greatly interested, and at once suggested that perhaps oil might be found near his own home in Washington County. - "Inventors", Philip Gengembre Hubert.