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watch fire

a fire maintained during the night as a signal and for providing light and warmth for guards.
Origin of watch fire
First recorded in 1795-1805 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for watch fire
Historical Examples
  • Still, as we can perceive the flame of that watch fire—for that is really a flame, is it not?

    Stronghand Gustave Aimard
  • Beyond the circle of light produced by the flickering flame of the watch fire all was buried in dense gloom.

    The Red Track Gustave Aimard
  • "This is certainly the place," the hunter exclaimed, as he pointed to the decaying embers of a watch fire.

    The Red Track Gustave Aimard
  • It is a watch–fire, and our foes are waking up to warm themselves and to keep their watch.

    The Matabele Campaign R. S. S. Baden-Powell
  • They laid their burden down tenderly enough by a watch fire.

    The Red River Half-Breed Gustave Aimard
  • It might come from a hut, or, he shivered, from the watch fire of a detachment of the Foreigners.

  • A council of war is going on beside the watch fire, between the three adventurers and the faithful Yeo.

    An English Grammar W. M. Baskervill and J. W. Sewell
  • He trimmed the watch fire, and was soon the only one awake near the spot except the sentinel.

British Dictionary definitions for watch fire

watch fire

a fire kept burning at night as a signal or for warmth and light by a person keeping watch
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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