from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An explosive mixture of saltpeter, charcoal, and sulfur, formerly used in firearms.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A simple form of gunpowder, consisting of a mixture of saltpetre, charcoal, and sulfur


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • "No. Blowing up the cell wall with black powder would most likely kill the occupant," Spink pointed out.

    Renegade's Magic

  • I can see the fascinating-looking black powder now, scintillating as Father poured it from the palm of his short brown hand into the muzzle of the gun.

    My Boyhood

  • At a gas station I bought a hat, and when I got here, I picked up a holster and some black powder forty-fours.

    A Bob Lee Swagger eBook Boxed Set

  • Cottony swirls of old-time black powder smoke rolled in the air.

    A Bob Lee Swagger eBook Boxed Set

  • “Here they are,” she says proudly, and dumps a jarful of grayish black powder onto the table.

    The Song of The Dodo

  • Grim black warriors covered with black powder sat or stood about, on a little clear spot of ground where the moon shone down; muskets and clubs and spears lay on the glass and were scattered about among the boles of the trees; a heathen-looking scene.

    The Old Helmet

  • "Oh, my Christ!" groans Jassa, and I looked past him and saw Jawaheer, crimson from head to foot, slide over the side of the howdah and fall headlong in the dust with his life flooding out of him — and still those fiends hacked and stabbed at his corpse, while some even emptied their muskets and pistols into it, until the air was thick with the reek of black powder smoke.

    Flashman and the Mountain of Light


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