A polyhedron consisting of two faces which are parallel regular polygons and a number of square or rectangular faces connecting those two. Named for the non-rectangular face type.

Also, a triangular prism made of glass, which refracts the different wavelengths of a beam of light passing through it differently, so as to separate the colors.

Prism participated on the Mutant Massacre among other Marauders on X-Factor #10. Apparently his whole body was some sort of crystal, enabling him to focus and intensify light and beams according to his will.

He may have one of the shortest comic book villain careers ever, since he was shattered against the wall mere four panels after his debut.

Prism (?), n. [L. prisma, Gr. , fr. , , to saw: cf. F. prisme.]

1. Geom.

A solid whose bases or ends are any similar, equal, and parallel plane figures, and whose sides are parallelograms.

Prisms of different forms are often named from the figure of their bases; as, a triangular prism, a quadrangular prism, a rhombic prism, etc.

2. Opt.

A transparent body, with usually three rectangular plane faces or sides, and two equal and parallel triangular ends or bases; -- used in experiments on refraction, dispersion, etc.

3. Crystallog.

A form the planes of which are parallel to the vertical axis. See Form, n., 13.

Achromatic prism Opt., a prism composed usually of two prisms of different transparent substances which have unequal dispersive powers, as two different kinds of glass, especially flint glass and crown glass, the difference of dispersive power being compensated by giving them different refracting angles, so that, when placed together so as to have opposite relative positions, a ray of light passed through them is refracted or bent into a new position, but is free from color. -- Nicol's prism, Nicol prism. [So called from Wm. Nicol, of Edinburgh, who first proposed it.] Opt. An instrument for experiments in polarization, consisting of a rhomb of Iceland spar, which has been bisected obliquely at a certain angle, and the two parts again joined with transparent cement, so that the ordinary image produced by double refraction is thrown out of the field by total reflection from the internal cemented surface, and the extraordinary, or polarized, image alone is transmitted.


© Webster 1913.

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