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Also flashing point. Physical Chemistry. the lowest temperature at which a liquid in a specified apparatus will give off sufficient vapor to ignite momentarily on application of a flame.
a critical point or stage at which something or someone suddenly causes or creates some significant action: A 10 percent drop in mortgage rates will produce a flash point in the housing market.
a critical situation or area having the potential of erupting in sudden violence: The Mideast has been the flash point for a series of conflicts.
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Origin of flash point
First recorded in 1875–80
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use flash point in a sentence
One thing this new unrest shares with the Second Intifada, also known as the al-Aqsa Intifada, is the flashpoint.Intifada 3.0: Growing Unrest and a Plot to Kill an Israeli Minister|Creede Newton|November 21, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The Holy City, specifically the al-Aqsa compound, has been the flashpoint for the latest round of conflict.The Radicals Who Slaughtered a Synagogue|Creede Newton|November 19, 2014|DAILY BEAST
But Singh also sees a potential flashpoint in the near future if the protest persists.Hong Kong Demonstrators Reject Racism|Ben Leung|October 2, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The New Deal and its excesses proved to be a flashpoint for ideological debates that occasionally came unhinged.A Brief History of Wingnuts in America; From George Washington to Woodstock|John Avlon|August 17, 2014|DAILY BEAST
He has been referenced in television, film, and music, sometimes simply as a cultural flashpoint, other times as a liberator.‘Black Jesus’ Resurrected: Racial Stereotypes or Subversive Comedy?|Rawiya Kameir|August 8, 2014|DAILY BEAST
British Dictionary definitions for flash point
the lowest temperature at which the vapour above a liquid can be ignited in air
a critical moment beyond which a situation will inevitably erupt into violencethe political mood has reached flash point
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
Scientific definitions for flash point
The lowest temperature at which the vapor of a flammable liquid will ignite in air. The flash point is generally lower than the temperature needed for the liquid itself to ignite.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Cultural definitions for flash point
For a given flammable substance, the lowest temperature at which vapors passing from the substance into the air will catch fire spontaneously if a small flame is present.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.