ETYM Latin sperma sperm + cetus,gen. ceti, any large sea animal, a whale, Greek. Related to Sperm, Cetaceous.
Waxlike substance used in candles, ointments, etc., obtained from oil of sperm-whale, etc.
Glistening waxlike substance, not a true oil, contained in the cells of the huge, almost rectangular “case” in the head of the sperm whale, amounting to about 2.8 metric tons/3 tons. It rapidly changes in density with variations in temperature. It was formerly used in lubricants and cosmetics, but in 1980 a blend of fatty acids and esters from tallow and coconut oil was developed as a substitute.
A white waxy substance from oil of the sperm whale.