tinder

noun
tin·​der | \ ˈtin-dər \

Definition of tinder

1 : a very flammable substance adaptable for use as kindling
2 : something that serves to incite or inflame that rhetoric was ready tinder for revolution— Margaret Peters

Examples of tinder in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Public policy has badly overegged the incentive for homeowners to build in its tinder-dry forest and wilderness areas. Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "California Burns for Better Leaders," 15 Jan. 2019 When a forest is dry as a tinder box, a spark (whether lightning or electrical-line malfunction) or wayward flame can start a blaze. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "What is going on with California’s horrific fires?," 13 Nov. 2018 Following years of drought and a summer of record-breaking heat, immense tracts of forests, chaparral and grasslands have become tinder that allows even a small spark to explode into a devouring blaze, authorities said. Fox News, "Back to rubble, some 'lost everything' in California fire," 2 Aug. 2018 The searing, record-setting heat that followed this year dried out plants, leaving many parts of the West coated in tinder. Umair Irfan, Vox, "The West is on fire ... again," 2 Aug. 2018 The soaking in both states comes in stark contrast to the tinder-dry conditions of the American Southwest, which is experiencing drought and an early wildfire season. NBC News, "Floating bears, rescued campers as Montana and Texas flood," 22 June 2018 For tinder, stuff petroleum jelly–soaked cotton balls into a couple of film canisters. Nick Davidson, Outside Online, "The Ultimate DIY Bug-Out Bag," 27 June 2018 That includes using goats to try and clean up as much woodland as possible before temperatures rise and the land becomes a tinder box. Washington Post, "Send in the goats: Portugal goes low-tech to beat wildfires," 14 June 2018 That includes using goats to clean up the underbrush in as much woodland as possible before temperatures rise and Portugal's rugged hills become a tinder box. Barry Hatton, Fox News, "Send in the goats: Portugal goes low-tech to beat wildfires," 13 June 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for tinder

Middle English, from Old English tynder; akin to Old High German zuntra tinder, Old English tendan to kindle

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Statistics for tinder

Last Updated

4 Feb 2019

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Time Traveler for tinder

The first known use of tinder was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for tinder

tinder

noun

English Language Learners Definition of tinder

: dry material (such as wood or grass) that burns easily and can be used to start a fire

tinder

noun
tin·​der | \ ˈtin-dər \

Kids Definition of tinder

: material that burns easily and can be used as kindling

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More from Merriam-Webster on tinder

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tinder

Spanish Central: Translation of tinder

Nglish: Translation of tinder for Spanish Speakers

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