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firedamp

[fahyuh r-damp]
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noun Mining.
  1. a combustible gas consisting chiefly of methane, formed especially in coal mines, and dangerously explosive when mixed with certain proportions of atmospheric air.
  2. the explosive mixture itself.
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Origin of firedamp

First recorded in 1670–80; fire + damp
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for firedamp

Historical Examples

  • Mr. Crotchet, jun.—I hope, Mr. Firedamp, you will let your friendship carry you a little closer into the jaws of the lion.

    Crotchet Castle

    Thomas Love Peacock

  • Next to her is Mr. Firedamp, a very absurd person, who thinks that water is the evil principle.

    Crotchet Castle

    Thomas Love Peacock

  • Proceeding to the edge of the moat, they fished up Mr. Firedamp, who had missed his way back, and tumbled in.

    Crotchet Castle

    Thomas Love Peacock

  • As well might the vapours of the swamp be purified by filling it with the firedamp.

  • When exploded by electricity, as in the previous case, no flame was produced, nor was the firedamp ignited.


British Dictionary definitions for firedamp

firedamp

noun
  1. a mixture of hydrocarbons, chiefly methane, formed in coal mines. It forms explosive mixtures with airSee also afterdamp
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012