any of a class of thiol compounds analogous to the alcohols, characterized by the substitution of sulfur for oxygen in the OH radical and by strong, unpleasant odors; hydrosulfide
Origin of mercaptanGer, contr. from Medieval Latin mercurium captans, literally , seizing mercury from Classical Latin mercurius, mercury (see mercury, n.) + captans, present participle of captare, to seize, frequentative of capere: see have
Origin of mercaptanGerman from Danish from Medieval Latin (corpus) mercurium captāns (a substance) seizing mercury mercurium accusative of mercurius mercury ; see mercury . Latin captāns present participle of captāre frequentative of capere to seize ; see capture .