[ guhn-pou-der ]
See synonyms for gunpowder on
  1. an explosive mixture, as of potassium nitrate, sulfur, and charcoal, used in shells and cartridges, in fireworks, for blasting, etc.

  2. Also called gunpowder tea . a fine variety of green China tea, each leaf of which is rolled into a little ball.

Origin of gunpowder

late Middle English word dating back to 1375–1425; see origin at gun1, powder1

Other words from gunpowder

  • gun·pow·der·y, adjective

Words Nearby gunpowder Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use gunpowder in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for gunpowder


/ (ˈɡʌnˌpaʊdə) /

  1. an explosive mixture of potassium nitrate, charcoal, and sulphur (typical proportions are 75:15:10): used in time fuses, blasting, and fireworks: Also called: black powder

Derived forms of gunpowder

  • gunpowdery, adjective

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