time bomb


Definition of time bomb

1 : a bomb so made as to explode at a predetermined time
2 : something with a potentially dangerous or detrimental delayed reaction

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Examples of time bomb in a Sentence

He's a time bomb getting ready to explode. If we don't do something about the pollution problem, we'll be sitting on a ticking time bomb.
Recent Examples on the Web Alfredo Ortiz: If ObamaCare is an economic time bomb, Medicare for All would be a nuclear explosion. Fox News, "FOX NEWS FIRST: Manafort trial to test Mueller probe; Trump open to Iran meeting with 'no preconditions'," 31 July 2018 So two of the underlying causes of the Fort Hood massacre five years ago — unarmed warriors, and unidentified human time bombs — are still with us. Nr Editors, National Review, "The Week," 19 Dec. 2019 Does it take a conscious effort to find the ticking time bombs of microaggressions in a company’s culture? Fortune, "Microaggressions Could Lead to a Blowup in Your Company," 17 Dec. 2019 Al-Hol, Syria — A sprawling refugee camp in northeast Syria is described as a breeding ground for ISIS and a ticking time bomb. Holly Williams, CBS News, "CBS News goes inside Syrian refugee camp filled with ISIS supporters," 19 Sep. 2019 No ticking time bombs were disarmed, no terrorist plots were foiled. David Klion, The New Republic, "The Heavy Burden of The Report," 12 Dec. 2019 The Arctic permafrost, frozen soil that is chock full of carbon, is a ticking time bomb. Paul Voosen, Science | AAAS, "Global impacts of thawing Arctic permafrost may be imminent," 21 Oct. 2019 Brazil’s pension expenditures are already high compared with those of other countries, and a rapidly aging population makes the current system a ticking time bomb. Rachel Gamarski, Washington Post, "Why the Future of Brazil’s Economy Rides on Pensions," 25 Oct. 2019 Clint Eastwood‘s latest movie appears to be a ticking time bomb of riveting suspense. Joey Nolfi, EW.com, "Clint Eastwood probes 1996 Atlanta bombing in first Richard Jewell trailer," 3 Oct. 2019

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

1893, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for time bomb

Time Traveler

The first known use of time bomb was in 1893

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Statistics for time bomb

Last Updated

20 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Time bomb.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/time%20bomb. Accessed 29 January 2020.

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More Definitions for time bomb

time bomb


English Language Learners Definition of time bomb

: a bomb that is set to explode at a particular moment
: a person or situation that will probably become dangerous or harmful in the future

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More from Merriam-Webster on time bomb

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for time bomb

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with time bomb

Spanish Central: Translation of time bomb

Comments on time bomb

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


to assert without proof or before proving

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