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Kerosene is a combustible hydrocarbon liquid. The word Kerosene was registered as a trademark by Abraham Gesner in 1854 and for several years only the North American Gas Light Company and the Downer Company were allowed to call their lamp oil kerosene.  It eventually became genericized.

It is usually called paraffin in the UK, South Africa and France (not to be confused with the waxy solid also called paraffin wax or just paraffin); the term kerosene is usual in much of Canada, the United States, Australia (where it is usually referred to as kero) and New Zealand.

Kerosene is widely used to power jet-engined aircraft (Jet fuel) and some rockets, but is also commonly used as a heating fuel and for fire toys such as poi.

The heat of combustion of Kerosene is similar to that of diesel.