- a mixture of liquid hydrocarbons obtained by distilling petroleum, bituminous shale, or the like, and widely used as a fuel, cleaning solvent, etc.
- using or fueled by kerosene: a kerosene lamp.
Origin of kerosene
Examples from the Web for kerosene
The cozy days of lighting the Hofburg Palace with kerosene rather than electricity had come to an abrupt end.
Franz Joseph lit the Hofburg Palace with kerosene lamps and viewed the telephone as a nuisance.
He awoke to dogs barking and gunshots, he said, and turned on a kerosene lantern to see what was going on.Afghan Victims’ Harrowing Testimony From the Robert Bales Trial
November 11, 2012
Small homes often have only kerosene lamps to provide light, which spew toxins equivalent to two packs of cigarettes a day.sOccket Inventors: Being Young and Stubborn Helps Innovation
March 9, 2012
Unfortunately, Jones didn't have those tools available to him, but he did have a Koran soaking in kerosene backstage.Terry Jones: How the Mad Pastor Oozed Back
Leon Dische Becker
April 2, 2011
They were all settin' purrin' in the dark, because they'd forgot to send for any kerosene.Tiverton Tales
It seemed to her as if the whole world were nothing but kerosene.
She was at the kerosene; oh, it makes me just sick to think of it.
It was believed that this supply had been shipped as kerosene from Saloniki to Piraeus.
The bottle was filled with kerosene, and in a jiffy the box was covered with the flame.The Book of Khalid
- Also called: paraffin a liquid mixture consisting mainly of alkane hydrocarbons with boiling points in the range 150°–300°C, used as an aircraft fuel, in domestic heaters, and as a solvent
- the general name for paraffin as a fuel for jet aircraft
Word Origin and History for kerosene
1852, coined irregularly by Canadian geologist Abraham Gesner (1797-1864), who discovered how to distill it c.1846, from Greek keros "wax" + chemical suffix -ene. So called because it contains paraffin (hence the British English name, paraffin oil).
- A thin, light-colored oil that is a mixture of hydrocarbons derived from petroleum. The hydrocarbons in kerosene contain between 11 and 12 carbon atoms. Kerosene is used as a fuel in lamps, home heaters and furnaces, and jet engines.