[ ney-pahm ]
/ ˈneɪ pɑm /
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See synonyms for: napalm / napalmed / napalming on Thesaurus.com


a highly incendiary jellylike substance used in fire bombs, flamethrowers, etc.

verb (used with object)

to drop bombs containing napalm on (troops, a city, or the like).



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“Was” is used for the indicative past tense of “to be,” and “were” is only used for the subjunctive past tense.

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Origin of napalm

An Americanism dating back to 1940–45; na(phthene) + palm(itate)

Words nearby napalm

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for napalm

British Dictionary definitions for napalm

/ (ˈneɪpɑːm, ˈnæ-) /


a thick and highly incendiary liquid, usually consisting of petrol gelled with aluminium soaps, used in firebombs, flame-throwers, etc


(tr) to attack with napalm

Word Origin for napalm

C20: from na (phthene) + palm (itate)
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 napalm

[ nāpäm′ ]

A firm jelly made by mixing gasoline with aluminum salts (made of fatty acids). It is used in some bombs and in flamethrowers. Napalm was developed during World War II.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.