a substance composed of a cyanogen group in combination with some element or radical; esp., potassium cyanide, KCN, or sodium cyanide, NaCN, extremely poisonous, white, crystalline compounds with an odor of bitter almonds: used in electroplating, extracting gold from low-grade ores, etc.
Origin of cyanidecyan(o)- + -ide
to treat with cyanide
The anionic univalent CN group, or any of various salts or esters of hydrogen cyanide containing a CN group, especially the extremely poisonous compounds potassium cyanide and sodium cyanide.
transitive verbcy·a·nid·ed, cy·a·nid·ing, cy·a·nides
- To treat (a metal surface) with cyanide to produce a hard surface.
- To treat (an ore) with cyanide to extract gold or silver.
(countable and uncountable, plural cyanides)