ac·​cel·​er·​ant | \ ik-ˈse-lə-rənt How to pronounce accelerant (audio) , ak- \

Definition of accelerant

: a substance used to accelerate a process (such as the spreading of a fire)

Examples of accelerant in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Mardi Gras 2020 is remembered locally as the last gasp of pre-Covid normalcy, as well as an accelerant of the virus’s spread. New York Times, "A New Orleans Mardi Gras With a Different Sort of Mask," 19 Jan. 2021 With these beliefs and attitudes in place, Trump’s Jan. 6 speech outside the White House served as a key accelerant to the attack by sparking the raucous crowd to action. Kurt Braddock, The Conversation, "At impeachment hearing, lawmakers will deliberate over a deadly weapon used in the attack on Capitol Hill – President Trump’s words," 13 Jan. 2021 Another video showed people pouring an accelerant on a BLM banner and setting it ablaze in the street as others cheered and cursed antifa. Ashraf Khalil And Michael Balsamo,, "Vandals hit Black churches during weekend of pro-Trump rallies in D.C.," 13 Dec. 2020 Thanksgiving is over, and public health officials’ persistent warnings that large celebrations and travel could douse accelerant on out-of-control Covid-19 spread have passed. Andrew Joseph, STAT, "How much did Thanksgiving contribute to Covid-19 spread? It’s wait and see for now," 29 Nov. 2020 Safety is among the most powerful motivators of human behavior, which also makes the drive to feel safe a potent accelerant for confusion, disinformation, and panic. Amanda Mull, The Atlantic, "The Pandemic Broke America’s Understanding of Safety," 26 Oct. 2020 That meant the second-floor blaze could not possibly have been set with an accelerant from above. Washington Post, "A flawed investigation left Jason Lively behind bars for 15 years for a fire he didn’t set. He’s not alone.," 22 Oct. 2020 The adhesive holds wispy magnesium flakes and fine grasses in place, and serves as a fire accelerant. T. Edward Nickens, Field & Stream, "10 Ways to Screw Up a Campfire (and How to Fix Them)," 28 Dec. 2020 The three then joined others and went inside, where Jackson intentionally set a fire on a counter in the mailroom and Edwards added a liquid accelerant. Paul Walsh, Star Tribune, "Three indicted on arson charges in fires at Minneapolis Target HQ during riot over false rumor," 10 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'accelerant.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of accelerant

1824, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for accelerant

acceler(ate) + -ant entry 1

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Time Traveler for accelerant

Time Traveler

The first known use of accelerant was in 1824

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Statistics for accelerant

Last Updated

24 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Accelerant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2021.

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