• Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Trinitrocellulose Gun cotton; -- so called because regarded as containing three nitro groups.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n trinitrocellulose A name often, though improperly, applied to guncotton under the assumption that the formula of cellulose or pure cotton fiber is C6H10O5 and that the action of nitric acid converts it into C6H7O5(NO2)3: but this latter formula should be written C6H7O2(NO3)3, since the product is not a nitro compound but a true nitrate, and the molecule of cellulose contains many times the number of atoms assumed in the above formula, which merely serves to indicate the relative proportions of the constituents.
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In literature:

But the fats that go into glycerine, and the cotton that becomes trinitrocellulose, could be put to better use by the Central states.
"The Iron Ration" by George Abel Schreiner