Definition of cinder in English:


Line breaks: cin¦der
Pronunciation: /ˈsɪndə


1A small piece of partly burnt coal or wood that has stopped giving off flames but still has combustible matter in it: a cold hearth full of cinders
More example sentences
  • Two years ago, a couple claimed their child was burned by a flying cinder from a train.
  • Firewalking refers to the activity of walking on hot coals, rocks or cinders without burning the soles of one's feet.
  • She alone has the presence of mind to remove a burning cinder from a table full of explosives.
1.1 (cinders) Ashes.
More example sentences
  • The wheels are exposed to a lot of corrosive elements such as the dust, salt, stones, and cinders.
  • The place was a mess; all the tables were either broken or burnt to cinders.
  • I too spent happy times wandering round the ‘field’ which was mostly of dirt and cinders.
2 [mass noun] Waste matter produced by smelting or refining ore; slag.
More example sentences
  • Years ago this was the way Rowntree's disposed of its cinder waste from its incinerator - it had waiting lists of people wanting this material.
  • We are going a roundabout way to the village via an abandoned rail line with a cinder trackbed.
  • Eventually we find a new little bike path of dirt and cinder that follows the Little Patuxent river.


Old English sinder 'slag', of Germanic origin; related to German Sinter. The similar but unconnected French cendre (from Latin cinis 'ashes') has influenced both the sense development and the spelling. Compare with sinter.


burnt to a cinder

Completely burnt: I like my steak burnt to a cinder
More example sentences
  • It looked like 15 years of hard work burnt to a cinder.
  • It was all burnt to a cinder by the time I got back in later that night.
  • Barbecue food has that odd combination of being burnt to a cinder on the outside and retaining a raw quality in the middle.



More example sentences
  • The waves pound the coast hard enough to send a tremor through the cindery sand.
  • As the road snakes up and over the cindery shoulder of Lassen Peak, it climbs through conifer forests to lake-dotted meadows.

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