Definition of tinderbox in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈtindərˌbäks/


1A thing that is readily ignited: dry winds and no rain have turned parts of the state into a tinderbox figurative food riots were a potential tinderbox in the city
More example sentences
  • And, a three-year drought has turned forests and swamps to tinderboxes.
  • Everyone knew the stand was a bit of a tinderbox, but none actually thought it would go up.
  • Even so, an ongoing drought and millions of acres of dead, bark beetle infected trees have turned much of the west into a potential tinderbox.
2 historical A box containing tinder, flint, a steel, and other items for kindling fires.
Example sentences
  • Iron and flint I had in my brass tinderbox, and I knelt down by the rocky ledge and began to gather bits of bark.
  • I flicked open the tinderbox, struggled with the flint several times before getting a light, and held it up with a shaking hand.
  • Nearby Silas's cottage, they find a tinderbox, which makes a townsman recall that a peddler who'd come to town recently carried a tinderbox.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: tin·der·box

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