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pyro

[ pahy-roh ]
/ ˈpaɪ roʊ /
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noun, plural py·ros.Informal.
a pyromaniac.
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Origin of pyro

By shortening; cf. -o

Other definitions for pyro (2 of 2)

pyro-

a combining form meaning “fire,” “heat,” “high temperature,” used in the formation of compound words: pyrogen; pyrolusite; pyromancy.
Chemistry. a combining form used in the names of inorganic acids, indicating that the acid's water content is intermediate between that of the corresponding ortho- (more water) and meta- (least water) acids (pyroantimonic, H4Sb2O7, pyroarsenic, H4As2O7, and pyrosulfuric, H2S2O7, acids). The combining form is also used in the names of the salts of these acids. If the acid ends in -ic, the corresponding salt ends in -ate (pyroboric acid, H2B4O7, and potassium pyrobate, K2B4O7, or pyrosulfuric, H2S2O7, and pyrosulfate, N2S2O7); if the acid ends in -ous, the corresponding salt ends in -ite (pyrophosphorous acid, H4P2O5, potassium pyrophosphite, K4P2O5).
Also pyr-.

Origin of pyro-

<Greek pyro-, combining form of pŷrfire
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

WORDS THAT USE PYRO-

What does pyro- mean?

Pyro– is a combining form used like a prefix that has two distinct senses.

The first of these senses is “fire,” “heat,” or “high temperature,” and this form of pyro– is occasionally used in a variety of scientific and technical terms.

The second of these senses is used in terms from chemistry to mean “inorganic acids” or “the salt of inorganic acids.”

Pyro– in both of these senses comes from Greek pŷr, meaning “fire.” The Latin translations of pŷr are ignis and incendium, both of which also mean “fire” and are the sources of terms such as ignite and incendiary. To learn more, check out our entries for both words.

What are variants of pyro-?

When combined with words or word elements that begin with a vowel, pyro– becomes pyr, as in pyric. Want to know more? Read our Words That Use article on pyr-.

Examples of pyro- with the sense “fire” or "heat"

One example of a term that features the form pyro– that you may have come across is pyromania, “a compulsion to set things on fire.”

The pyro– part of the word means “fire,” and the mania part of the word means “mania,” or “excessive excitement or enthusiasm.” Pyromania literally means “fire mania.”

What are some words that use the combining form pyro-?

What are some other forms that pyro– may be commonly confused with?

Break it down!

The combining form lysis means “breaking down, loosening, decomposition.” With this in mind, what does pyrolysis mean?

Examples of pyro- with the sense “inorganic acids” or "the salt of inorganic acids"

A term from chemistry that features the from pyro– to refer to “the salt of inorganic acid” is pyroborate, also known as borax, “a white, water-soluble powder or crystals, hydrated sodium borate, Na2B4O7⋅10H2O.”

What are some words that use the combining form pyro-?

What are some other forms that pyro– may be commonly confused with?

Break it down!

The word phosphoric means “containing phosphorus.” With this in mind, what is a pyrophosphoric chemical compound?

How to use pyro in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for pyro

pyro-

before a vowel pyr-


combining form
denoting fire, heat, or high temperaturepyromania; pyrometer
caused or obtained by fire or heatpyroelectricity
chem
  1. denoting a new substance obtained by heating anotherpyroboric acid is obtained by heating boric acid
  2. denoting an acid or salt with a water content intermediate between that of the ortho- and meta- compoundspyro-phosphoric acid
mineralogy
  1. having a property that changes upon the application of heatpyromorphite
  2. having a flame-coloured appearancepyroxylin

Word Origin for pyro-

from Gk pur fire
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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