A complex in which one component (the host) forms a cavity or, in the case of a crystal, a crystal lattice containing spaces in the shape of long tunnels or channels in which molecular entities of a second chemical species (the guest) are located. There is no covalent bonding between guest and host, the attraction being generally due to van der Waals forces. If the spaces in the host lattice are enclosed on all sides so that the guest species is 'trapped' as in a cage, such compounds are known as clathrates or 'cage compounds'.
See also: crown, cryptand, cryptate, intercalation compounds
PAC, 1994, 66, 1077. 'Glossary of terms used in physical organic chemistry (IUPAC Recommendations 1994)' on page 1124 (https://doi.org/10.1351/pac199466051077)
PAC, 1995, 67, 1307. 'Glossary of class names of organic compounds and reactivity intermediates based on structure (IUPAC Recommendations 1995)' on page 1344 (https://doi.org/10.1351/pac199567081307)