[ fee-ver ]
See synonyms for: feverfevered on Thesaurus.com

  1. an abnormal condition of the body, characterized by undue rise in temperature, quickening of the pulse, and disturbance of various body functions.

  2. an abnormally high body temperature.

  1. the number of degrees of such a temperature above the normal.

  2. any of a group of diseases in which high temperature is a prominent symptom: scarlet fever.

  3. intense nervous excitement: The audience was in a fever of anticipation.

verb (used with object)
  1. to affect with or as with fever: The excitement fevered him.

Origin of fever

First recorded before 1000; Middle English; Old English fefer, from Latin febr-, stem of febris; reinforced by Anglo-French fevre, Old French fievre, from Latin, as above

Other words from fever

  • fe·ver·less, adjective
  • un·fe·vered, adjective

Words that may be confused with fever

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use fever in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for fever


/ (ˈfiːvə) /

  1. an abnormally high body temperature, accompanied by a fast pulse rate, dry skin, etc: Related adjectives: febrile, pyretic

  2. any of various diseases, such as yellow fever or scarlet fever, characterized by a high temperature

  1. intense nervous excitement or agitation: she was in a fever about her party

  1. (tr) to affect with or as if with fever

Origin of fever

Old English fēfor, from Latin febris

Derived forms of fever

  • fevered, adjective
  • feverless, adjective

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

Scientific definitions for fever


[ vər ]

  1. A body temperature that is higher than normal. Fever is the body's natural response to the release of substances called pyrogens by infectious agents such as bacteria and viruses. The pyrogens stimulate the hypothalamus in the brain to conserve heat and increase the basal metabolic rate.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Other Idioms and Phrases with fever


see cabin fever; run a fever.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.