- a structure or apparatus in which heat may be generated, as for heating houses, smelting ores, or producing steam.
- a place characterized by intense heat: The volcano was a seething furnace.
- (initial capital letter) Astronomy. the constellation Fornax.
- to heat (a metal piece) in a furnace.
Origin of furnace
Examples from the Web for furnace
The high-cheekboned actor wears a leather jacket and turtleneck and slicks back his hair in Out of the Furnace.Willem Dafoe Cuts Like a Blade
December 8, 2013
Scott had recently finished shooting the drama Out of the Furnace, starring Christian Bale.Cause of Tony Scott’s Apparent Suicide Still Being Determined
August 21, 2012
A jet engine that is still functioning is basically a furnace, and the most likely first source of ignition.The Year of Flying Dangerously
December 23, 2009
It came from the furnace of the Revolution, tempered to the necessities of the times.
I should have thought this weather and the bank behind it furnace enough, mother!Weighed and Wanting
Yet I hold that the true art of my craft lies as much in the furnace as in the brush.The White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle
All around and above the furnace, there was total obscurity.Sketches from Memory
When one drove it was through an air like the breath from the open mouth of a furnace.The Incomplete Amorist
- an enclosed chamber in which heat is produced to generate steam, destroy refuse, smelt or refine ores, etc
- a very hot or stifling place
Word Origin and History for furnace
early 13c., from Old French fornaise "oven, furnace" (12c.), from Latin fornacem (nominative fornax) "an oven, kiln," related to fornus, furnus "oven," and to formus "warm," from PIE root *ghwer- "warm" (cf. Greek thermos, Old English wearm; see warm (adj.)).