- a slender, stringlike piece or filament of relatively rigid or flexible metal, usually circular in section, manufactured in a great variety of diameters and metals depending on its application.
- such pieces as a material.
- a length of such material, consisting either of a single filament or of several filaments woven or twisted together and usually insulated with a dielectric material, used as a conductor of electricity.
- a cross wire or a cross hair.
- a barbed-wire fence.
- a long wire or cable used in cable, telegraph, or telephone systems.
- Nautical. a wire rope.
- a telegram.
- the telegraphic system: to send a message by wire.
- wires, a system of wires by which puppets are moved.
- a metallic string of a musical instrument.
- Underworld Slang. the member of a pickpocket team who picks the victim's pocket.Compare stall2(def 5).
- Horse Racing. a wire stretched across and above the track at the finish line, under which the horses pass.
- Ornithology. one of the extremely long, slender, wirelike filaments or shafts of the plumage of various birds.
- a metal device for snaring rabbits and other small game.
- Papermaking. the woven wire mesh over which the wet pulp is spread in a papermaking machine.
- the wire, the telephone: There's someone on the wire for you.
- made of wire; consisting of or constructed with wires.
- resembling wire; wirelike.
- to furnish with wires.
- to install an electric system of wiring in, as for lighting.
- to fasten or bind with wire: He wired the halves together.
- to put on a wire, as beads.
- to send by telegraph, as a message: Please wire the money at once.
- to send a telegraphic message to: She wired him to come at once.
- to snare by means of a wire.
- to equip with a hidden electronic device, as an eavesdropping device or an explosive.
- to connect (a receiver, area, or building) to a television cable and other equipment so that cable television programs may be received.
- Informal. to be closely connected or involved with: a law firm wired into political circles.
- Informal. to prepare, equip, fix, or arrange to suit needs or goals: The sales force was wired for an all-out effort.
- Croquet. to block (a ball) by placing it behind the wire of an arch.
- to send a telegraphic message; telegraph: Don't write; wire.
- down to the wire, to the very last moment or the very end, as in a race or competition: The candidates campaigned down to the wire.
- pull wires, Informal. to use one's position or influence to obtain a desired result: to pull wires to get someone a job.
- under the wire, just within the limit or deadline; scarcely; barely: to get an application in under the wire.
Origin of wire
- a slender flexible strand or rod of metal
- a cable consisting of several metal strands twisted together
- a flexible metallic conductor, esp one made of copper, usually insulated, and used to carry electric current in a circuit
- (modifier) of, relating to, or made of wirea wire fence; a wire stripper
- anything made of wire, such as wire netting, a barbed wire fence, etc
- a long continuous wire or cable connecting points in a telephone or telegraph system
- a metallic string on a guitar, piano, etc
- horse racing, mainly US and Canadian the finishing line on a racecourse
- a wire-gauze screen upon which pulp is spread to form paper during the manufacturing process
- anything resembling a wire, such as a hair
- a snare made of wire for rabbits and similar animals
- to the wire or down to the wire informal right up to the last moment
- get in under the wire informal, mainly US and Canadian to accomplish something with little time to spare
- get one's wires crossed informal to misunderstand
- pull wires mainly US and Canadian to exert influence behind the scenes, esp through personal connections; pull strings
- take it to the wire to compete to the bitter end to win a competition or title
- (also intr) to send a telegram to (a person or place)
- to send (news, a message, etc) by telegraph
- to equip (an electrical system, circuit, or component) with wires
- to fasten or furnish with wire
- (often foll by up) to provide (an area) with fibre optic cabling to receive cable television
- to string (beads, etc) on wire
- croquet to leave (a player's ball) so that a hoop or peg lies between it and the other balls
- to snare with wire
- wire in informal to set about (something, esp food) with enthusiasm
Word Origin and History for prewired
Old English wir "metal drawn out into a thread," from Proto-Germanic *wiraz (cf. Old Norse viravirka "filigree work," Swedish vira "to twist," Old High German wiara "fine gold work"), from PIE *wei- "to turn, twist, plait" (cf. Old Irish fiar, Welsh gwyr "bent, crooked;" Latin viere "to bend, twist," viriæ "bracelets," of Celtic origin). Wiretapping is recorded from 1904, from earlier wiretapper (1893). Wirepuller in the political sense is 1848, American English.