- the powdery residue of matter that remains after burning.
- Also called volcanic ash. Geology. finely pulverized lava thrown out by a volcano in eruption.
- a light, silvery-gray color.
- deathlike grayness; extreme pallor suggestive of death.
- ruins, especially the residue of something destroyed; remains; vestiges: the ashes of their love; the ashes of the past.
- mortal remains, especially the physical or corporeal body as liable to decay.
- anything, as an act, gesture, speech, or feeling, that is symbolic of penance, regret, remorse, or the like.
Origin of ash1
- any of various trees of the genus Fraxinus, of the olive family, especially F. excelsior, of Europe and Asia, or F. americana (white ash), of North America, having opposite, pinnate leaves and purplish flowers in small clusters.
- the tough, straight-grained wood of any of these trees, valued as timber.
- Also æsc. the symbol “æ.”
Origin of ash2
Examples from the Web for ash
The JMG office that just a few days ago received victims of human rights abuse is now empty, covered in black ash.Putin’s Favorite Acolyte Terrorizes Human Rights Activists
December 14, 2014
Brash, crass, and sporting a perpetually raised eyebrow, Ash Williams remains the ultimate postmodern superhero.The King of Postmodern Cool Is Reborn in ‘Ash Vs. The Evil Dead’
November 15, 2014
Volcanoes spewed lava and ash, ocean floors were thrust upward, sand and rock and shale settled into slurry.Napa’s Earthquake Is Not The Only Thing Shaking The Vineyards
August 31, 2014
The company says this produces wood that ignites easier and burns cleaner, with less creosote and ash.Brooklyn’s Booming Firewood Industry
July 8, 2014
Lava and ash fell for days; the sun was obliterated for three months.Book a Room for Two in a Santorini Cave
June 10, 2014
The sword shall belong to him who can draw it from the ash tree's heart.Opera Stories from Wagner
For ash, however, the actual character 'æ' represents the long vowel.Beowulf
A stick parted and fell into ash, and Miss Susan came awake.Tiverton Tales
Being tired, they lay down under an ash tree and fell asleep.Classic Myths
Mary Catherine Judd
Athens,—except for that sparkle,—thy name, I had moldered to ash!Graded Poetry: Second Year
- the nonvolatile products and residue formed when matter is burnt
- any of certain compounds formed by burningSee soda ash
- fine particles of lava thrown out by an erupting volcano
- a light silvery grey colour, often with a brownish tinge
- any oleaceous tree of the genus Fraxinus, esp F. excelsior of Europe and Asia, having compound leaves, clusters of small greenish flowers, and winged seeds
- the close-grained durable wood of any of these trees, used for tool handles, etc
- any of several trees resembling the ash, such as the mountain ash
- Australian any of several Australian trees resembling the ash, esp of the eucalyptus genus
- the digraph æ, as in Old English, representing a front vowel approximately like that of the a in Modern English hat. The character is also used to represent this sound in the International Phonetic Alphabet
- Action on Smoking and Health
Word Origin and History for ash
"powdery remains of fire," Old English æsce "ash," from Proto-Germanic *askon (cf. Old Norse and Swedish aska, Old High German asca, German asche, Gothic azgo "ashes"), from PIE root *as- "to burn, glow" (cf. Sanskrit asah "ashes, dust," Armenian azazem "I dry up," Greek azein "to dry up, parch," Latin ardus "parched, dry"). Spanish and Portuguese ascua "red-hot coal" are Germanic loan-words.
Symbol of grief or repentance; hence Ash Wednesday (c.1300), from custom introduced by Pope Gregory the Great of sprinkling ashes on the heads of penitents on the first day of Lent. Ashes meaning "mortal remains of a person" is late 13c., in reference to the ancient custom of cremation.
type of tree, Old English æsc "ash tree," also "spear made of ash wood," from Proto-Germanic *askaz, *askiz (cf. Old Norse askr, Old Saxon ask, Middle Dutch esce, German Esche), from PIE root *os- "ash tree" (cf. Armenian haci "ash tree," Albanian ah "beech," Greek oxya "beech," Latin ornus "wild mountain ash," Russian jasen, Lithuanian uosis "ash"). Ash was the preferred wood for spear-shafts, so Old English æsc sometimes meant "spear" (cf. æsc-here "company armed with spears").