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a product of the action of a mixture of nitric and sulfuric acids on cotton; used to make collodion.


Consists chiefly of cellulose tetranitrate, obtained by the action of nitric and sulfuric acids on cotton; used in the preparation of collodion.
[pyro- + G. xylon, wood]
References in periodicals archive ?
The Lusitania on her final voyage, apparently carried ammunition explosives, and some of this gun-cotton; also Canadian soldiers and their families and, re-directed from another Cunarder at the last minute, some important Americans.
The products of this thorough research have been repeatedly dismissed by our coy Sapper because there is no mention of such gun-cotton in his army manual.
Gun-cotton was used in the 1939-45 war, and as an example I offer news of its use on Southend Pier (one mile long) as an instrument to destroy the pier should Hitler's forces invade after Dunkirk.