A sparkler is a type of hand-held firework that burns slowly while emitting coloured flames, sparks, and many effects.

In the United Kingdom, a sparkler is often used by children at bonfire and fireworks displays on Guy Fawkes Night, the fifth of November each year.


The "classic" type of sparkler consists of a thin metal rod approximately 20 cm (8 inches) long that has been dipped in a thick batter of pyrotechnic composition and allowed to dry. This composition is rich in a metallic fuel such as aluminium or iron, which when burned creates silver or gold coloured sparks, respectively. The fuel typically contains potassium nitrate, as an oxidizer. Coloured flame can be achieved by addition of nitrates or chlorides of such as copper or barium.

A more modern type of sparkler, known as the "Morning Glory", consists of a long, thin paper tube filled with composition and attached to a wooden rod using brightly-coloured tissue paper and ribbon. Several different compositions can be packed into a single tube, resulting in a sparkler that changes colour.

afety issues

Sparklers are responsible for the vast majority of legal firework-related injuries, but mainly as a result of parents giving sparklers to young children. The devices burn at a high temperature (as hot as 1800 to 3000° F, or 1000 to 1600° C), depending on the fuel and oxidizer used. This can cause devastating burns to hands and faces or ignite clothing. The government recommends adults to ensure children are wearing non-flammable clothing or materials which cannot catch fire easily.Sparklers, as with all fireworks, present a fire hazard. This is especially true in drier areas; in Australia, for instance, sparkler-related bushfire accidents have led to their banning at public outdoor events during summer like Australia Day celebrations. It is always wise to wear gloves while handling lit sparklers.

parklers in art and pop culture

Art group monochrom ignited 10,000 bound sparklers as a "symbolic liberation", because "sparklers are bound to various monotheistic rituals" and stand as representatives "of all symbols that have been enslaved and abused by the monotheistic world religions." [ [ Free Bariumnitrate] ]


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Sparkler — Spar kler, n. One who scatters; esp., one who scatters money; an improvident person. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sparkler — Spar kler, n. One who, or that which, sparkles. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sparkler — Spar kler, n. (Zo[ o]l.) A tiger beetle. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sparkler — (n.) in the hand held fireworks sense, 1879, agent noun from SPARKLE (Cf. sparkle) (v.) …   Etymology dictionary

  • sparkler — ► NOUN ▪ a hand held firework that emits sparks …   English terms dictionary

  • sparkler — [spär′klər] n. a person or thing that sparkles; specif., a) a thin stick of pyrotechnic material that burns with bright sparks b) [pl.] Informal clear, brilliant eyes c) Informal a diamond or similar gem …   English World dictionary

  • sparkler — UK [ˈspɑː(r)klə(r)] / US [ˈspɑrk(ə)lər] noun [countable] Word forms sparkler : singular sparkler plural sparklers a type of firework that you hold in your hand and that makes bright sparks when you burn one end of it …   English dictionary

  • sparkler — n British a lie, especially a welcome or helpful lie. A working class Londoner s expres sion. ► So he wouldn t say the old sparkler? (Simon Holdaway, Inside the British Police, 1983) …   Contemporary slang

  • sparkler — [[t]spɑ͟ː(r)klə(r)[/t]] sparklers N COUNT A sparkler is a small firework that you can hold as it burns. It looks like a piece of thick wire and burns with a lot of small bright sparks …   English dictionary

  • sparkler — n. a diamond; gemstones. □ Look at the sparklers on that old dame. □ Janice has a new sparkler on her finger …   Dictionary of American slang and colloquial expressions

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