Combustible means "able to catch fire," like matches or the extremely dry forest floors that people sometimes forget are combustible — until they go up in flames.

When the adjective combustible first entered the English language in the sixteenth century, it was used to describe things that burn easily. The word soon came to apply not only to objects that ignite but also to tempers that are prone to "catch fire" easily. If you’ve ever been around a person who has a combustible temper, you can understand the connection.

Definitions of combustible
  1. adjective
    capable of igniting and burning
    burnable, ignitable, ignitible
    capable of burning
    comburant, comburent, combustive
    supporting combustion
    flammable, inflammable
    easily ignited
    can emit sparks or burst into flame
    capable of catching fire spontaneously or causing fires or burning readily
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    incombustible, noncombustible
    not capable of igniting and burning
    impervious to damage by fire
    fire-resistant, fire-resisting, fire-resistive, fire-retardant
    difficult to burn
    flame-retardant, flameproof
    resistant to catching fire
    impossible to ignite
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  2. noun
    a substance that can be burned to provide heat or power
    synonyms: combustible material
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    type of:
    a substance that can be consumed to produce energy
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