Are compounds made up of molecules?

1 Answer

Many covalent compounds( are molecules, but "made up of" would be an awkward way to describe it. Silica is an example of a non-molecular, but covalent compound.


A compound is made of two or more atoms of different elements joined together. Two or more atoms joined together by chemical bonds is the definition of a molecule.

Some molecules are made of two or more atoms of the same element. These molecules are not compounds.

So compounds might be molecules, but not all molecules are compounds, and not all compounds are molecules.

Many compounds are actually formula units of an ionic lattice. The formula units are not molecules, because the atoms are not held together by chemical bonds, but by ionic attractions and repulsions throughout the lattice.