explosive

adjective
ex·​plo·​sive | \ik-ˈsplō-siv, -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 ghetto 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

One soldier arrived riddled with shrapnel from an improvised explosive device. Jim Rendon, Marie Claire, "When Female Veterans Return Home," 29 Oct. 2018 And this game's canvas is way more explosive than its Nintendo inspiration. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Diablo 3, Untitled Goose Game lead PAX West’s Nintendo Switch lineup," 4 Sep. 2018 This fairly calm meeting leads to Patty and Stan’s confrontation, which is far more explosive than the one Mrs. Bowes has with Mr. Bowes’ mistress. refinery29.com, "TV Loves Calling Out Cheaters Right Now," 10 July 2018 And that becomes even more potentially explosive given Kavanaugh’s article in 2009. Chuck Todd, NBC News, "How the Mueller probe could complicate Kavanaugh's confirmation," 10 July 2018 However, with Cook expected to return to full strength, Minnesota is getting a legitimate game-changer back, which help make an already solid offense more explosive. Mike Jones, USA TODAY, "Vikings training camp questions: Is Kirk Cousins last piece in Super Bowl puzzle?," 2 July 2018 The notice comes as the most active volcanic fissure becomes even more explosive. CBS News, "Hawaii warns residents in path of lava: Get out now or face arrest," 1 June 2018 And then the more explosive question is whether any of that money ever made its way into Trump’s pockets. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Did a Russian Oligarch Funnel Money From Russia to Michael Cohen?," 25 May 2018 An unknown number of possible explosive devices were found at the school and off campus. Juan A. Lozano, The Christian Science Monitor, "Texas school shooting draws attention back to student gun control efforts," 18 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

May, the explosives expert who has investigated serial bombings for decades, thinks that the bombs were poorly made and thus unable to detonate. Alex Ward, Vox, "2 possible reasons the pipe bombs didn’t explode," 26 Oct. 2018 Public-nuisance lawsuits are designed to address conduct that broadly affects a community, like pollution or the storage of explosives. Greg Stohr, The Seattle Times, "Supreme Court rejects lead-paint makers’ appeals in $400 million case," 15 Oct. 2018 It had been unearthed at the bottom of a construction site and was defused Friday by police explosives experts, after a nerve-racking five-hour operation. Erik Kirschbaum, latimes.com, "Unexploded WWII bomb brings large-scale disruption to Berlin," 20 Apr. 2018 The silver-grey van was hauled away hours later, after explosives experts had thoroughly checked it. Kirsten Grieshaber And Dorothee Thiesing, chicagotribune.com, "Germany still clueless about motive for fatal van attack," 8 Apr. 2018 In the movie: Joe Bang (Daniel Craig), the explosives expert who the brothers bust out of prison to help with the heist, stops to buy a beer at a concession stand during the race. Théoden Janes, charlotteobserver, "How accurate is ‘Logan Lucky’ movie’s portrayal of Charlotte Motor Speedway?," 12 Jan. 2018 The first is that there are best practices to identify when someone has sent explosives through the mail, like when names are misspelled. Alex Ward, Vox, "2 possible reasons the pipe bombs didn’t explode," 26 Oct. 2018 In 2015, an internal investigation found that TSA agents failed to detect weapons and explosives in 67 out of 70 undercover tests. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, "TSA might let you keep everything in carry-on bags—in five years or so," 24 July 2018 Urquhart’s story is especially relevant in his hometown of Philadelphia, since a law revised in October 2017 expanded access to purchasing certain explosives in Pennsylvania. Amanda Macmillan, Health.com, "This 25-Year-Old's Warning About Fireworks Safety Is Going Viral After a Celebration Left Him Nearly Blind," 3 July 2018

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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Statistics for explosive

Last Updated

5 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for explosive

The first known use of explosive was in 1696

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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, -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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