Definition of tinderbox in English:


Syllabification: tin·der·box
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.
    More 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.

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