[ ahy-er-ning ]
/ ˈaɪ ər nɪŋ /


the act or process of smoothing or pressing clothes, linens, etc., with a heated iron.
articles of clothing or the like that have been or are to be ironed.

Nearby words

  1. ironfisted,
  2. ironhanded,
  3. ironic,
  4. ironical,
  5. ironically,
  6. ironing board,
  7. ironist,
  8. ironize,
  9. ironmaster,
  10. ironmonger

Origin of ironing

First recorded in 1700–10; iron + -ing1

Origin of iron

before 900; Middle English, Old English īren (noun and adj.), perhaps < *īsren, metathesized from īsern, variant of īsen; compare Old Saxon, Old High German, Old Norse īsarn, Gothic eisarn < Germanic *īsarnam, perhaps < Celtic; compare Gaulish Ysarno-, Iserno- (in place names), Old Breton hoiarn, Welsh haearn, Old Irish íarn

Related formsi·ron·less, adjectivei·ron·like, adjectiveun·i·roned, adjectivewell-i·roned, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ironing

British Dictionary definitions for ironing


/ (ˈaɪənɪŋ) /


the act of ironing washed clothes
clothes that are to be or that have been ironed


/ (ˈaɪən) /




See also iron out, irons

Derived Formsironer, nounironless, adjectiveironlike, adjective

Word Origin for iron

Old English irēn; related to Old High German īsan, Old Norse jārn; compare Old Irish īarn

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

Word Origin and History for ironing
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for ironing


[ īərn ]


A lustrous, malleable, ductile, magnetic or magnetizable metallic element. Atomic number 26.
A dietary supplement or medication containing an iron salt, such as ferrous sulfate.


Made of or containing iron.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for ironing


[ īərn ]


A silvery-white, hard metallic element that occurs abundantly in minerals such as hematite, magnetite, pyrite, and ilmenite. It is malleable and ductile, can be magnetized, and rusts readily in moist air. It is used to make steel and other alloys important in construction and manufacturing. Iron is a component of hemoglobin, which allows red blood cells to carry oxygen and carbon dioxide through the body. Atomic number 26; atomic weight 55.845; melting point 1,535°C; boiling point 2,750°C; specific gravity 7.874 (at 20°C); valence 2, 3, 4, 6. See Periodic Table. See Note at element.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with ironing


In addition to the idioms beginning with iron

  • iron hand
  • iron out
  • irons in the fire, too many

also see:

  • pump iron
  • strike while the iron's hot
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.