com·​bus·​ti·​ble | \ kəm-ˈbə-stə-bəl How to pronounce combustible (audio) \

Definition of combustible

1 : capable of combustion combustible materials, such as paper, leaves, and sawdust combustible gases
2 : easily excited a combustible temper The coach had to keep the combustible players under control.

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Other Words from combustible

combustibility \ kəm-​ˌbə-​stə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce combustible (audio) \ noun
combustible noun
combustibly \ kəm-​ˈbə-​stə-​blē How to pronounce combustible (audio) \ adverb

Examples of combustible in a Sentence

The fuel is highly combustible. don't store oily rags and other combustible materials in a hot attic
Recent Examples on the Web With combustible items like this there really isn’t a limit on how many. .... Eric Zorn,, 11 June 2021 June’s pain and rage are combustible, but the moment also reveals this mother’s boundless capacity for love. Washington Post, 31 May 2021 But few were put together with the kind of sleek style and sweaty sleaze created by the combustible combination of the director Paul Verhoeven and the writer Joe Eszterhas. Jason Bailey, New York Times, 1 Feb. 2021 The state faces severe drought conditions as temperatures rise, and combustible conditions when winds rise and power lines come into contact with brush and branches. John Myers, Los Angeles Times, 24 May 2021 And fashion and gender are at the heart of a combustible conversation about individual identity and the room that this country makes for the full expression of it. Washington Post, 21 May 2021 Homeowners are also pushing back against even modest suggestions to defuse fires, like removing combustible landscaping. Alissa Walker, Curbed, 21 May 2021 The high cost of transporting combustible items long distances or across borders can discourage recycling. Ian Morse, Science | AAAS, 20 May 2021 Some 98 percent of American cars are fueled by combustible engines. Stephen Moore, National Review, 11 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'combustible.' 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 combustible

1529, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for combustible

borrowed from Medieval Latin combustibilis, from Latin combustus (past participle of combūrere "to destroy with fire, combust") + -ibilis -ible

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Learn More About combustible

Time Traveler for combustible

Time Traveler

The first known use of combustible was in 1529

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Statistics for combustible

Last Updated

16 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Combustible.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for combustible



English Language Learners Definition of combustible

: able to be burned easily


com·​bus·​ti·​ble | \ kəm-ˈbə-stə-bəl How to pronounce combustible (audio) \

Kids Definition of combustible

: catching fire or burning easily


com·​bus·​ti·​ble | \ kəm-ˈbəs-tə-bəl How to pronounce combustible (audio) \

Medical Definition of combustible

: capable of combustion combustible anesthetics

More from Merriam-Webster on combustible

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for combustible

Nglish: Translation of combustible for Spanish Speakers


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