A match is a tool for starting a fire under controlled conditions. A typical modern match is made of a small wooden stick or stiff paper. One end is coated with a material that can be ignited by frictional heat generated by striking the match against a suitable surface. Matches are usually sold in quantity; wooden ones are packaged in boxes, and paper matches are clustered in rows stapled into matchbooks. They are commonly sold by tobacconists and many other kinds of shops. The coated end of a match, known as the match "head," contains either phosphorus or phosphorus sesquisulfide as the active ingredient and gelatin as a binder. There are two main types of matches: safety matches, which can be struck only against a specially prepared surface, and strike-anywhere matches, for which any suitably frictional surface can be used. Some match-like compositions, known as electric matches, are ignited electrically and do not make use of heat from friction.
Famous quotes containing the word match:
“The upbeat lawyer/negotiator of preadolescence has become a real pro by nowcynical, shrewd, a tough cookie. Youre constantly embroiled in a match of wits. Youre exhausted.”
—Ron Taffel (20th century)
“You look rather rash my dear your colors dont quite match your face.”
—Daisy Ashford (18811972)
“What have Massachusetts and the North sent a few sane representatives to Congress for, of late years?... All their speeches put together and boiled down ... do not match for manly directness and force, and for simple truth, the few casual remarks of crazy John Brown on the floor of the Harpers Ferry engine-house,that man whom you are about to hang, to send to the other world, though not to represent you there.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)