explosive Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary

Meaning of “explosive” in the English Dictionary

"explosive" in British English

See all translations


uk   /ɪkˈspləʊ.sɪv/  us   /-ˈsploʊ-/

explosive adjective (BURST)

C2 exploding or ​able to ​explodeeasily: Certain ​gases are highly explosive. An explosive device (= a ​bomb) was ​found at one of the capital's ​busieststations this ​morning. very ​loud and ​sudden, like an ​explosion: There was an explosive ​clap of ​thunderoverhead.

explosive adjective (EMOTION)

C2 An explosive ​situation or ​emotion is one in which ​strongfeelings are ​loudly or ​violentlyexpressed: The situation in some of America's ​cities has ​become explosive. Capital ​punishment is an explosive issue. She has an explosive temper.

explosive adjective (INCREASE)

An explosive ​increase is very ​large and ​quick: The last few ​years have ​seen an explosive ​increase in the ​number of ​homelesspeople on ​ourstreets.
adverb uk   us   /-li/
noun [U] uk   us   /-nəs/

explosivenoun [C or U]

C2 a ​substance or ​piece of ​equipment that can ​causeexplosions
(Definition of explosive from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"explosive" in American English

See all translations


 us   /ɪkˈsploʊ·sɪv/

explosive adjective (BURSTING VIOLENTLY)

exploding or ​able to ​explodeeasily: an explosive ​device Certain ​gases are ​highly explosive. fig. It was a ​politically explosive ​issue. Explosive also ​meansdifficult to ​control and ​likely to be ​violent: She has an explosive ​temper.

explosive adjective (VERY QUICK)

very ​quick and ​big: There has been an explosive ​increase in the ​numberhouseholdsowning a ​computer.

explosivenoun [C]

 us   /ɪkˈsploʊ·sɪv/

explosive noun [C] (SUBSTANCE THAT BURSTS)

a ​substance that can be made to ​burstviolently: Explosives are sometimes used to ​blast away ​rock in ​construction. Dynamite is a ​powerful explosive.
(Definition of explosive from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of explosive?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website
Word of the Day


to get knowledge or skill in a new subject or activity

Word of the Day

Tree huggers and climate change deniers
Tree huggers and climate change deniers
by Colin McIntosh,
October 08, 2015
The climate debate is one that has predictably generated a large amount of new vocabulary, some of it originally specialized scientific terminology that has been taken up by the media and is now common currency. Some of these terms are new additions to the Cambridge English Dictionary. The two opposing sides in

Read More 

face training noun
face training noun
October 05, 2015
a system of facial exercises designed to tone the facial muscles and improve the skin

Read More