[ fahyuh r ]
/ faɪər /
a state, process, or instance of combustion in which fuel or other material is ignited and combined with oxygen, giving off light, heat, and flame.
a burning mass of material, as on a hearth or in a furnace.
the destructive burning of a building, town, forest, etc.; conflagration.
heat used for cooking, especially the lighted burner of a stove: Put the kettle on the fire.
flashing light; luminous appearance.
brilliance, as of a gem.
burning passion; excitement or enthusiasm; ardor.
liveliness of imagination.
fever or inflammation.
severe trial or trouble; ordeal.
exposure to fire as a means of torture or ordeal.
strength, as of an alcoholic beverage.
a spark or sparks.
the discharge of firearms: enemy fire.
the effect of firing military weapons: to pour fire upon the enemy.
British. a gas or electric heater used for heating a room.
Literary. a luminous object, as a star: heavenly fires.
verb (used with object), fired, fir·ing.
to set on fire.
to supply with fuel; attend to the fire of: They fired the boiler.
to expose to the action of fire; subject to heat.
to apply heat to in a kiln for baking or glazing; burn.
to heat very slowly for the purpose of drying, as tea.
to inflame, as with passion; fill with ardor.
to light or cause to glow as if on fire.
to discharge (a gun).
to project (a bullet or the like) by or as if by discharging from a gun.
to subject to explosion or explosive force, as a mine.
to hurl; throw: to fire a stone through a window.
to dismiss from a job.
Veterinary Medicine. to apply a heated iron to (the skin) in order to create a local inflammation of the superficial structures, with the intention of favorably affecting deeper inflammatory processes.
to drive out or away by or as by fire.
verb (used without object), fired, fir·ing.
to take fire; be kindled.
to glow as if on fire.
to become inflamed with passion; become excited.
to shoot, as a gun.
to discharge a gun: to fire at a fleeing enemy.
to hurl a projectile.
Music. to ring the bells of a chime all at once.
(of plant leaves) to turn yellow or brown before the plant matures.
(of an internal-combustion engine) to cause ignition of the air-fuel mixture in a cylinder or cylinders.
(of a nerve cell) to discharge an electric impulse.
fire away, Informal. to begin to talk and continue without slackening, as to ask a series of questions: The reporters fired away at the president.
- to discharge (as weapons, ammunition, etc.): Police fired off canisters of tear gas.
- to write and send hurriedly: She fired off an angry letter to her congressman.
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Question 1 of 10
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Idioms for fire
between two fires, under physical or verbal attack from two or more sides simultaneously: The senator is between two fires because of his stand on the bill.
build a fire under, Informal. to cause or urge to take action, make a decision quickly, or work faster: If somebody doesn't build a fire under that committee, it will never reach a decision.
- Also catch on fire. to become ignited; burn: The sofa caught fire from a lighted cigarette.
- to create enthusiasm: His new book did not catch fire among his followers.
- to be delayed in exploding, or fail to explode.
- to be undecided, postponed, or delayed: The new housing project is hanging fire because of concerted opposition.
- to fail to explode or discharge, as a firearm.
- to fail to produce the desired effect; be unsuccessful: He repeated the joke, but it missed fire the second time.
- ignited; burning; afire.
- eager; ardent; zealous: They were on fire to prove themselves in competition.
- to cause to burn; ignite.
- to excite; arouse; inflame: The painting set fire to the composer's imagination.
- to become ignited; burn.
- to become inspired with enthusiasm or zeal: Everyone who heard him speak immediately took fire.
- under attack, especially by military forces.
- under censure or criticism: The school administration is under fire for its policies.
fight fire with fire, to use the same tactics as one's opponent; return like for like.
go through fire and water, to brave any danger or endure any trial: He said he would go through fire and water to win her hand.
play with fire, to trifle with a serious or dangerous matter: He didn't realize that insulting the border guards was playing with fire.
set fire to,
Origin of fire
before 900; (noun) Middle English; Old English fȳr; cognate with Old Norse fūrr, German Feuer, Greek pŷr (see pyro-); (v.) Middle English firen to kindle, inflame, derivative of the noun
OTHER WORDS FROM firefir·er, nouncoun·ter·fire, noun, verb (used without object), coun·ter·fired, coun·ter·fir·ing.re·fire, verb, re·fired, re·fir·ing.un·fired, adjective
Words nearby fire
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
British Dictionary definitions for set fire to
/ (faɪə) /
the state of combustion in which inflammable material burns, producing heat, flames, and often smoke
- a mass of burning coal, wood, etc, used esp in a hearth to heat a room
- (in combination)firewood; firelighter
a destructive conflagration, as of a forest, building, etc
a device for heating a room, etc
something resembling a fire in light or brilliancea diamond's fire
a flash or spark of or as if of fire
- the act of discharging weapons, artillery, etc
- the shells, etc, fired
a burst or rapid volleya fire of questions
intense passion; ardour
liveliness, as of imagination, thought, etc
a burning sensation sometimes produced by drinking strong alcoholic liquor
fever and inflammation
a severe trial or torment (esp in the phrase go through fire and water)
catch fire to ignite
draw someone's fire to attract the criticism or censure of someone
- to delay firing
- to delay or be delayed
no smoke without fire the evidence strongly suggests something has indeed happened
- in a state of ignition
- ardent or eager
- informal playing or performing at the height of one's abilities
open fire to start firing a gun, artillery, etc
play with fire to be involved in something risky
set fire to or set on fire British
- to ignite
- to arouse or excite
set the world on fire, British set the Thames on fire or Scot set the heather on fire informal to cause a great sensation
under fire being attacked, as by weapons or by harsh criticism
to discharge (a firearm or projectile) or (of a firearm, etc) to be discharged
to detonate (an explosive charge or device) or (of such a charge or device) to be detonated
(tr) informal to dismiss from employment
(tr) ceramics to bake in a kiln to harden the clay, fix the glaze, etc
to kindle or be kindled; ignite
(tr) to provide with fueloil fires the heating system
(intr) to tend a fire
(tr) to subject to heat
(tr) to heat slowly so as to dry
(tr) to arouse to strong emotion
to glow or cause to glow
(intr) (of an internal-combustion engine) to ignite
(intr) (of grain) to become blotchy or yellow before maturity
vet science another word for cauterize
(intr) Australian informal (of a sportsman, etc) to play well or with enthusiasm
a cry to warn others of a fire
the order to begin firing a gun, artillery, etc
Derived forms of firefireable, adjectivefireless, adjectivefirer, noun
Word Origin for fire
Old English fӯr; related to Old Saxon fiur, Old Norse fūrr, Old High German fūir, Greek pur
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
Medical definitions for set fire to
[ fīr ]
To generate an electrical impulse. Used of a neuron.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Idioms and Phrases with set fire to (1 of 2)
set fire to
see set on fire.
Idioms and Phrases with set fire to (2 of 2)
In addition to the idioms beginning with fire
- fire away
- fire off
- fire on all cylinders
- fire up
- add fuel to the fire
- ball of fire
- baptism of fire
- catch fire
- caught in the cross-fire
- draw fire
- fat is in the fire
- fight fire with fire
- get on (like a house afire)
- hang fire
- hold one's fire
- hold someone's feet to the fire
- irons in the fire
- light a fire under
- line of fire
- miss fire
- no smoke without fire
- on fire
- open fire
- out of the frying pan into the fire
- play with fire
- set on fire
- set the world on fire
- spread like wildfire
- trial by fire
- under fire
- where's the fire
Also see underfiring.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.