- a high explosive, originally consisting of nitroglycerin mixed with an absorbent substance, now with ammonium nitrate usually replacing the nitroglycerin.
- any person or thing having a spectacular effect.
- to blow up, shatter, or destroy with dynamite: Saboteurs dynamited the dam.
- to mine or charge with dynamite.
- Informal. creating a spectacular or optimum effect; great; topnotch: a dynamite idea; a dynamite crew.
Origin of dynamite
Examples from the Web for dynamite
One strip, Foolish Grandpa and Sour Henry, shows Grandpa being hit on the head by a sandbag and blown up by dynamite.The Magazine That Made—and Unmade—Politicians
November 2, 2014
But the poem set off tiny sticks of dynamite behind my eyes.Dealing With Dad the Dealer
April 9, 2014
“Coulda been a dynamite gig, too, man,” Berry Oakley laments.Stacks: Hitting the Note with the Allman Brothers Band
March 15, 2014
He would turn up at private views with distress flares and sticks of dynamite and stuff.Joshua Compston Was Once the Wunderkind of the British Art World…and Now He’s Been Practically Forgotten
January 17, 2014
The state he lived in licensed purchasers of dynamite and other incendiaries only after a background check.Who’s Safe With a Gun? Don’t Ask a Shrink
May 12, 2013
It is said that dynamite must have been used, and that in a very large quantity.Jennie Baxter, Journalist
He was tackling a delicate job—like juggling a car-load of dynamite.The Cruise of the Dry Dock
T. S. Stribling
None of your dynamite pudding that,—as green as grass and as sour as vinegar.The Manxman
His hands had been blown away by a dynamite cartridge while fishing in some lagoon.Within the Tides
The railway will know where to go for dynamite should we get short at any time.Nostromo: A Tale of the Seaboard
- an explosive consisting of nitroglycerine or ammonium nitrate mixed with kieselguhr, sawdust, or wood pulp
- informal a spectacular or potentially dangerous person or thing
- (tr) to mine or blow up with dynamite
Word Origin and History for dynamite
1867, from Swedish dynamit, coined 1867 by its inventor, Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel (1833-1896), from Greek dynamis "power" (see dynamic (adj.)) + -ite (2). Figurative sense of "something potentially dangerous" is from 1922. Positive sense of "dynamic and excellent" by mid-1960s, perhaps originally Black English.
1881, from dynamite (n.). Related: Dynamited; dynamiting.
- A powerful explosive used in blasting and mining. It typically consists of nitroglycerin and a nitrate (especially sodium nitrate or ammonium nitrate), combined with an absorbent material that makes it safer to handle.