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1. Any of a class of powerful explosives composed of nitroglycerin or ammonium nitrate dispersed in an absorbent medium with a combustible dope, such as wood pulp, and an antacid, such as calcium carbonate, used in blasting and mining.
2. Slang
a. Something exceptionally exciting or wonderful.
b. Something exceptionally dangerous: These allegations are political dynamite.
tr.v. dy·na·mit·ed, dy·na·mit·ing, dy·na·mites
To blow up, shatter, or otherwise destroy with dynamite.
adj. Slang
Outstanding; superb: a dynamite performance; a dynamite outfit.

[Swedish dynamit, from Greek dunamis, power; see dynamic.]

dy′na·mit′er n.
Word History: The Nobel Prizes were established by the Swedish chemist and industrialist Alfred Nobel (1833-1896) with funds from his immense personal fortune, amassed in part through the manufacture of explosives and armaments. Nobel was the inventor of dynamite—he had discovered that the highly explosive chemical compound nitroglycerine could be made easier to transport and handle if it was mixed with an inert substance. To name his mixture, Nobel invented the word dynamite. Originally coined in Swedish in the form dynamit, the word was compounded from Greek dunamis, "power," and the Swedish suffix -it, which corresponds to the English suffix -ite used to form the names of rocks, minerals, commercial products, and other substances. Greek dunamis also gave us words such as dynamic and dynamo. Dunamis is related to the Greek verb dunasthai, "to be able," from which comes English dynasty, denoting a family or group that wields power over several generations.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.dynamiter - a person who uses dynamite in a revolutionary cause
revolutionary, revolutionist, subversive, subverter - a radical supporter of political or social revolution
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Pour tenter d'attirer des clients sur un marche de plus en plus concurrentiel, des "entrepreneurs" n'hesitent pas a dynamiter les acquis sociaux.
The dynamiter, laying a bomb, ought to feel that, whatever else he is, at least he is orthodox" (39).
Michal Peprnik notices that Robert Louis Stevenson's The New Arabian Nights and The Dynamiter contain extraordinary phenomena that function as the fantastic, and Stevenson accomplishes this by experimentation with narrative techniques.
(How and where she met him is unknown.) Retzlaff's first professional fight had been in 1929, and he lived up to his nickname, "The Duluth Dynamiter," until January 17, 1936, when a young Joe Louis knocked him out in less than two minutes.
Cela evitera par exemple aux proprietaires des carrieres de dynamiter des grottes ou des dolmens difficilement identifiables.
(50) Stevenson's More New Arabian Nights: The Dynamiter (188;), co-written with his wife Fanny, picks up the characters of New Arabian Nights in a new set of linked short stories set against the background of spies and dynamite explosions.
Hemingway's alter ego, the unabashedly heroic dynamiter Robert Jordan, describes with care the drinking behavior of his comrades in arms.
In the present article, I want to argue that The Secret Agent has indeed gained new relevance, but that this relevance goes beyond the fact that the novel features a (failed) attack on a symbolically significant target, a motif that may already be found in Robert Louis and Fanny Van de Grift Stevenson's little discussed The Dynamiter (1885) as well as in a host of other "dynamite novels" of the turn of the century (Melchiori; Frank; O Donghaile).
The dynamiter gathered his equipment and moved to the next stump.
Aidan Galvin, the Irish Dynamiter, escapes from his prison wagon in Whitechapel.