ka·​pok | \ ˈkā-ˌpäk How to pronounce kapok (audio) \

Definition of kapok

1 or kapok tree : a massive tropical deciduous tree (Ceiba pentandra) of the silk-cotton family that has a trunk with short, sharp prickles, a buttressed base, and porous lightweight wood and that bears large seed pods containing numerous silky fibers
2 : a mass of silky fibers that surrounds the seeds of the kapok tree and are used especially as a filling for mattresses, pillows, life preservers, and sleeping bags and as insulation

Examples of kapok in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The fill is a blend of shredded memory foam and kapok, a silky natural fiber that’s similar to cotton. Lexie Sachs, Good Housekeeping, "7 Best Memory Foam Pillows You Can Buy," 21 Dec. 2018 Milkweed’s sartorial use harks at least to World War II, when overseas supplies of kapok, an insulating fiber, were cut off. Jennifer Levitz, WSJ, "This Winter's Hot Fashion: Parkas Stuffed With Vermont Weeds," 27 Sep. 2017 Now the (slight) downsides: Poinciana forms small support buttresses at its base, which are really graceful and superficially resemble those of an old Ficus or kapok tree. Kenneth Setzer, miamiherald, "This regal tree looks like it burst into flames," 20 July 2017 Yambio, a midsize town of wide dirt roads and lofty kapok trees that seem to breathe tranquillity, used to be part of what was called a green state. Jeffrey Gettleman, New York Times, "War Consumes South Sudan, a Young Nation Cracking Apart," 4 Mar. 2017 By law, developers cannot cut down kapok trees during construction, Figuerola says, because without it, the ecosystem could collapse. National Geographic, "Planned Mega-Hotel on Iconic Surfing Beach Sparks Controversy," 26 Feb. 2017 The scene is watched over by ancient kapok, abachi and black afara trees. Femke Van Zeijl, New York Times, "In Sacred Grove in Nigeria, Worship and Connection," 13 Dec. 2016

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

circa 1750, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for kapok


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Dictionary Entries near kapok





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Time Traveler for kapok

The first known use of kapok was circa 1750

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with kapok

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about kapok

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appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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