ex·​plo·​sion | \ ik-ˈsplō-zhən How to pronounce explosion (audio) \

Definition of explosion

1 : the act or an instance of exploding injured in a laboratory explosion
2 : a large-scale, rapid, or spectacular expansion or bursting out or forth the explosion of suburbia an explosion of red hair
3 : the release of occluded breath that occurs in one kind of articulation of stop consonants

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Synonyms & Antonyms for explosion



  • implosion
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Examples of explosion in a Sentence

The filmmakers staged the car's explosion. The island was rocked by a series of volcanic explosions. The region has experienced a population explosion. His comments prompted an explosion of laughter from the crowd.
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Recent Examples on the Web That included the tests made on passengers and crew of the Diamond Princess, where Japan’s attempt to quarantine the boat resulted in an explosion in infections to more than 700 cases. Isabel Reynolds, Bloomberg.com, "Limited Virus Testing in Japan Masks True Scale of Infection," 7 May 2020 Last year, a small fire in the battery room of a hybrid electric ferry in Norway resulted in an explosion. Daniel Oberhaus, Wired, "Want Electric Ships? Build A Better Battery," 19 Mar. 2020 Surat Lal died with seven colleagues in an explosion at a small quarry in India, but like thousands of other casualties at mines in the developing world, his death wasn’t counted as a mining fatality. Krishna Pokharel, WSJ, "Many Miners Die, and It Never Shows Up in Safety Data," 27 Feb. 2020 And there are bangers, which end with a small explosion. David Gutman, Anchorage Daily News, "Washington county wants to shoot fireworks at trash-bombing eagles," 18 Feb. 2020 And the resulting shock wave destroys the star in an explosion called a supernova that is temporarily brighter than the rest of Earth’s home galaxy, the Milky Way, put together. The Economist, "Stellar evolution Might there soon be a supernova near Earth?," 11 Jan. 2020 This has driven the field to redirect its efforts toward new and sometimes very different ideas, ushering in an explosion of theoretical work related to dark matter and its nature. Dan Hooper, Time, "Will We Ever Find Dark Matter in the Universe?," 6 Dec. 2019 In July, an oxygen regulator on a transport gurney was believed to be the source of a small explosion at Norwalk Hospital in Connecticut. Gabrielle Chung, PEOPLE.com, "North Carolina Woman Dies After Cigarette She Was Smoking Causes Her Oxygen Tank to Explode," 4 Dec. 2019 In the last 20 years, the world has seen the greatest explosion in human mobility in our history. Fortune, "Forget ‘wet markets’ and bats: For scientists, failing environmental policies have created a boom time for outbreaks," 22 Apr. 2020

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

1681, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for explosion

Latin explosion-, explosio act of driving off by clapping, from explodere

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Time Traveler for explosion

Time Traveler

The first known use of explosion was in 1681

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Statistics for explosion

Last Updated

21 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Explosion.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/explosion. Accessed 30 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for explosion


How to pronounce explosion (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of explosion

: the sudden, loud, and violent release of energy that happens when something (such as a bomb) breaks apart in a way that sends parts flying outward
: a sudden and very fast increase
: a sudden expression of some strong emotion


ex·​plo·​sion | \ ik-ˈsplō-zhən How to pronounce explosion (audio) \

Kids Definition of explosion

1 : a sudden and noisy bursting (as of a bomb) : the act of exploding
2 : a sudden outburst of feeling


ex·​plo·​sion | \ ik-ˈsplō-zhən How to pronounce explosion (audio) \

Medical Definition of explosion

: the act or an instance of exploding

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