explosive

adjective
ex·​plo·​sive | \ ik-ˈsplō-siv How to pronounce explosive (audio) , -ziv \

Definition of explosive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : relating to, characterized by, or operated by explosion an explosive hatch
b : resulting from or as if from an explosion explosive population growth
2a : tending to explode an explosive person
b : likely to erupt in or produce hostile reaction or violence an explosive situation

explosive

noun

Definition of explosive (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an explosive substance
2 : a consonant characterized by explosion in its articulation when it occurs in certain environments : stop

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Other Words from explosive

Adjective

explosively adverb
explosiveness noun

Examples of explosive in a Sentence

Adjective He has an explosive temper. there's been an explosive interest in the sport since the Olympics
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The New Delhi Television news channel said the explosive device had ball bearings wrapped in a plastic bag and was left on the pavement outside the embassy. Star Tribune, "Small explosion near Israeli Embassy in New Delhi," 29 Jan. 2021 In that scenario, the team would rely on Brady to put up points against a good defense that is not nearly as explosive. Benjamin Hoffman, New York Times, "N.F.L. Playoff Predictions: Our Picks in the Conference Championships," 21 Jan. 2021 Jared Cook was surging into Tampa Bay Buccaneers territory, crossing midfield and looking to turn a short gain into an explosive play. Luke Johnson, NOLA.com, "Saints turn it over 4 times in season-ending loss to Bucs. 'That's not winning football'," 17 Jan. 2021 The Go route from Smith will clear the corner and any nearby safety, trying to protect the defense from an explosive play. cleveland, "Previewing the Ohio State-Alabama CFP Championship: Jimmies and Joes vs. X’s and O’s," 6 Jan. 2021 Oregon is explosive and Iowa State has allowed a high number of long pass plays. oregonlive, "Oregon Ducks vs. Iowa State Cyclones: Fiesta Bowl preview, odds, time, TV channel, how to watch live stream online," 2 Jan. 2021 This is why the recovery from the global financial crisis of 2007-09 was so anemic, while the recovery after World War II was so explosive—federal spending tumbled from 45% of gross domestic product in 1946 to 11% in 1948. WSJ, "‘Stimulus’ Sounds a Lot Better Than ‘Redistribution’," 27 Dec. 2020 The Wildcats haven’t been explosive, but Ramsey, a graduate transfer from Indiana, has led an offensive resurgence that took them from disastrous to respectable. Shannon Ryan, chicagotribune.com, "Column: What’s on the line when Northwestern faces Ohio State in the Big Ten championship game? Respect — and maybe a good steakhouse meal.," 17 Dec. 2020 If the Cowboys need an explosive play out of their rushing attack, Pollard is the best man for the job. John Owning, Dallas News, "Film room: 3 things we learned from Cowboys-Bengals, including why RB-by-committee is the way for Dallas to go," 14 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun At least nine people died in the group’s attacks, among them a 64-year-old secretary and a 15-year-old militant killed by his own explosive. Dan Bilefsky, New York Times, "A Polarizing Documentary Spurs Debate Over a Violent Time in Quebec," 6 Dec. 2020 Wolf Gideon Mohr, 27, was arrested Wednesday after a criminal complaint was filed on charges of making internet threats to destroy a building by use of explosive. Ana Faguy, baltimoresun.com, "Columbia man faces federal charges after U.S. Attorney’s Office says he threatened to blow up IRS building," 21 Jan. 2021 Tragically, the twins were orphaned in their preteen years when an explosive suddenly hit their apartment building and killed their parents. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "What Is 'WandaVision' About? Read Scarlet Witch's Heartbreaking Backstory Before Watching the Disney+ Show," 24 Jan. 2021 According to an official police website, a single protestor threw an explosive that exploded near officers on bikes, setting off a clash. Victoria Albert, CBS News, "2 officers shot in Louisville as protests erupt nationwide over Breonna Taylor case," 24 Sep. 2020 More recently, the Weather Underground set off an explosive in 1971 to protest the U.S. bombing of Laos, and the May 19th Communist Movement bombed the Senate in 1983 in response to the invasion of Grenada. Jerry Schwartz, Star Tribune, "Capitol has seen violence over 220 years, but not like this," 6 Jan. 2021 The bombing, which came after a sound system in the RV warned listeners that an explosive was inside, injured at least three people and damaged at least 41 buildings, one of which was destroyed, according to authorities. Drew Fitzgerald, WSJ, "Nashville Bombing Suspect Anthony Warner Died in Explosion, Police Say," 27 Dec. 2020 On the way to the vacation home, Fox and Croft stopped to inspect them underside of a highway bridge near the vacation home for a place to mount an explosive. Tresa Baldas, Detroit Free Press, "6 Whitmer kidnap suspects indicted. 1 called for killing police, feds say," 17 Dec. 2020 The gun could fire smoke, high-explosive, and HEAT anti-tank rounds that were advertised as capable of punching through nearly 4 inches of armor at 7,000 yards. Cory Graff, Popular Mechanics, "Let's Remember When French Paratroopers Once Used Bazooka Vespas in Combat," 30 Nov. 2020

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

Adjective

1696, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1773, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Time Traveler for explosive

Time Traveler

The first known use of explosive was in 1696

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Statistics for explosive

Last Updated

24 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Explosive.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/explosive. Accessed 4 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for explosive

explosive

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of explosive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: able to cause an explosion : used for exploding something
: relating to an explosion or caused by an explosion
: tending to get angry very easily

explosive

noun

English Language Learners Definition of explosive (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance (such as dynamite) that is used to cause an explosion : an explosive substance

explosive

adjective
ex·​plo·​sive | \ ik-ˈsplō-siv How to pronounce explosive (audio) , -ziv \

Kids Definition of explosive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : able to cause explosion the explosive power of gunpowder
2 : tending to show anger easily : likely to explode an explosive temper

Other Words from explosive

explosively adverb

explosive

noun

Kids Definition of explosive (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance that is used to cause an explosion

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Comments on explosive

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