Definition of explosive in English:

explosive

Line breaks: ex¦plo|sive
Pronunciation: /ɪkˈspləʊsɪv
 
, ɛk-/

adjective

1Able or likely to shatter violently or burst apart: an explosive device
More example sentences
  • When this vehicle was blown apart by an improvised explosive device, an IED, debris flew in every direction.
  • As we reported, the military today said it discovered sarin nerve gas in an explosive device, an artillery shell, in fact.
  • ‘You drop a tank of fuel and a small explosive charge to burst it apart,’ he explained.
Synonyms
1.1(Of a vocal sound) produced with a sharp release of air: Ruth let out an explosive sound of disbelief
More example sentences
  • Fewer spoken words start with vowels, which provide more subtle acoustic cues than the more explosive consonant sounds.
2Likely to cause an outburst of anger or controversy: Marco’s explosive temper the idea was politically explosive
More example sentences
  • Here is a suggested sequence of events to participate in to get through anger or a potentially explosive situation.
  • Willingness to negotiate and compromise, when appropriate, helps regain control of an explosive situation.
  • The league, moving in their habitually mysterious ways, think the club have been ‘excessive’ in response to a moderately explosive controversy.
Synonyms
fiery, stormy, violent, volatile, volcanic, angry, fierce, impassioned, passionate, intense, vehement, tempestuous, turbulent, touchy, irritable, irascible, hot-headed, short-tempered, quick-temperedtense, charged, highly charged, overwrought; critical, serious, dangerous, perilous, hazardous, knife-edge, touch-and-go; sensitive, delicate, unstable, volatile, inflammable, volcanic, ugly, nasty
informal iffy, dicey
3(Of an increase) sudden and dramatic: the explosive growth of personal computers in the 1980s
More example sentences
  • In other words, the explosive increase in the number of passenger cars and licensed drivers over the past decade resulted in poor education in driving etiquette and traffic rules.
  • However, there has not been a single explosive increase in spending similar to what would have been required to make the business plans of the bubble years a reality.
  • Since then, the argument goes, there has been an explosive increase in the quantity of money in circulation, mainly due to the creation of credit.
Synonyms
sudden, dramatic, rapid, abrupt, meteoric; mushrooming, snowballing, escalating, rocketing, accelerating

noun

(often explosives) Back to top  
A substance which can be made to explode, especially any of those used in bombs or shells: stocks of explosives [mass noun]: a car full of explosive
More example sentences
  • The enemy rained down explosives and incendiary bombs and then dumped barrels of oil onto the flames.
  • One also prohibited the discharge of projectiles and explosives from balloons.
  • Not connecting it this way would make it a bomb stripped of all explosives, a dud.
Synonyms

Derivatives

explosively

adverb
More example sentences
  • Getting recognized has not been a problem for this politically charged, explosively energetic group - they receive a warm reception wherever they go.
  • In the first four years of life, the child's brain is explosively growing, and it's much more sensitive to experience.
  • Literally thousands of ideas get tossed out onto the internet every minute but only a few take hold and spread but when they do spread they do so explosively.

explosiveness

noun
More example sentences
  • With this century's explosiveness this no longer seems possible.
  • Aware of the subject's explosiveness, Stein did his best to create a working atmosphere of familial security.
  • They know the degree of volatility and potential explosiveness of a brutalised population.

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Pronunciation: əˈnämələs
adjective
deviating from what is standard, normal, or expected