ker·​o·​sene | \ ˈker-ə-ˌsēn How to pronounce kerosene (audio) , ˌker-ə-ˈsēn\
variants: or less commonly kerosine

Definition of kerosene

: a flammable hydrocarbon oil usually obtained by distillation of petroleum and used as a fuel, solvent, and thinner

Examples of kerosene in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Official fuel-export quotas, which include diesel and kerosene, jumped 35% last year, and China may raise them again so refiners can maintain production. Paul Page, WSJ, "Today’s Logistics Report: Packaging for Refills; Airbus May Take Wing; Walmart’s Driving Trucks," 25 Jan. 2019 It will be powered by liquid oxygen (known in the space business as LOX) and cryogenic liquid methane, rather than the LOX/kerosene mix other SpaceX engines have used. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Elon Musk Shows Off SpaceX Raptor Engine Tests," 4 Feb. 2019 The 10-by-24-foot wood structure has insulated panels, a kerosene stove, an outhouse and a big loft that can easily sleep between 10 and 12 people, Hinds said. Devin Kelly, Anchorage Daily News, "A new hut with dramatic views rose up this summer in Alaska’s Hatcher Pass backcountry," 8 July 2018 Three women and a man were stabbed and shot, their bodies then soaked in kerosene and set on fire. William Lee,, "Fierce gang leader went from death row to respected 'Mayor of Chicago Avenue'," 29 June 2018 His company’s jet packs are powered by kerosene, adding even more noise. Joshua Brustein,, "Boeing asked for quiet jet packs but got a bunch of air motorcycles," 14 June 2018 Ten minutes into the game, the news started rocketing around social media: an increase of 38 percent on gas, 47 percent on diesel and 51 percent on kerosene, which is used largely by Haiti's poor to light up their homes.. Jacqueline Charles, miamiherald, "Haitian officials knew the gas price hike would be unpopular. They did it anyway," 10 July 2018 That only threw kerosene on the media fires which in turn lit up today's press briefing. Fox News, "Laura Ingraham: Anatomy of a freak out," 19 July 2018 The announced fuel hikes, which took effect at midnight Friday before being temporarily suspended, called for a 38 percent increase for gas, 47 percent for diesel and 51 percent for kerosene. Jacqueline Charles, miamiherald, "Haiti has put a fuel hike on hold. But is it enough to save the prime minister's job?," 7 July 2018

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

1854, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for kerosene

Greek kēros + English -ene (as in camphene)

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Statistics for kerosene

Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for kerosene

The first known use of kerosene was in 1854

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More Definitions for kerosene



English Language Learners Definition of kerosene

chiefly US : a type of oil that is burned as a fuel


ker·​o·​sene | \ ˈker-ə-ˌsēn How to pronounce kerosene (audio) \

Kids Definition of kerosene

: a thin oil obtained from petroleum and used as a fuel and solvent


variants: also kerosine \ ˈker-​ə-​ˌsēn How to pronounce kerosine (audio) , ˌker-​ə-​ˈ How to pronounce kerosine (audio) , ˈkar-​ , ˌkar-​ \

Medical Definition of kerosene

: a flammable hydrocarbon oil usually obtained by distillation of petroleum and used for a fuel and as a solvent and thinner (as in insecticide emulsions)

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More from Merriam-Webster on kerosene

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with kerosene

Spanish Central: Translation of kerosene

Nglish: Translation of kerosene for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about kerosene

Comments on kerosene

What made you want to look up kerosene? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


of or relating to a parable or parabola

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