# What is the OH in alcohol?

What is the $\ce{OH}$ functional group in alcohol (ethanol)? My teacher told me it isn't the same as the $\ce{OH-}$ ion or hydroxide.
But it does donate one electron to the respective carbon chain and it's very tempting to say it's hydroxide as it fits perfectly into the role. What exactly is it?

• Hydroxyl group, not hydroxide, though I'm not the one that gave -1. – M.A.R. Jan 12 '15 at 17:00

But the $\ce{OH}$ you are bothered about can be thought exactly as that of $\ce{OH}$ of water ($\ce{H2O}$)
$\ce{C2H5-OH}$ in the same way as $\ce{H-OH}$