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noun, fu·el often attributive \ˈfyü(-ə)l\

: a material (such as coal, oil, or gas) that is burned to produce heat or power

: something that gives support or strength to something (such as argument or angry feelings)

Full Definition of FUEL

a :  a material used to produce heat or power by burning
b :  nutritive material
c :  a material from which atomic energy can be liberated especially in a reactor
:  a source of sustenance or incentive :  reinforcement

Examples of FUEL

  1. I had the fuel pump replaced on my car.
  2. These latest scandals will provide further fuel for his political opponents.
  3. These latest accusations will only add fuel to the controversy.
  4. The controversy continues to rage, and these latest accusations will only add fuel to the fire.

Origin of FUEL

Middle English fewel, from Anglo-French fuail, feuaile, from Vulgar Latin *focalia, from Latin focus hearth
First Known Use: 13th century

Related to FUEL

Other Energy Engineering Terms

fusion, scram



: to supply (something) with fuel

: to take in fuel

: to give support or strength to (something)

fueled or fuelledfuel·ing or fuel·ling

Full Definition of FUEL

transitive verb
:  to provide with fuel
:  support, stimulate <movement is fueled by massive grants-in-aid — Allen Schick>
intransitive verb
:  to take in fuel —often used with up

Examples of FUEL

  1. The airplanes were fueled in midair.
  2. The criticism she has faced has only fueled her determination to succeed.
  3. Inflation was fueled by high prices.
  4. The strong economy has fueled the construction of new homes.

First Known Use of FUEL

FUEL Defined for Kids


noun fu·el \ˈfyü-əl\

Definition of FUEL for Kids

:  a substance (as oil or gasoline) that can be burned to produce heat or power


fu·eled or fu·elledfu·el·ing or fu·el·ling

Definition of FUEL for Kids

:  to supply with or take on fuel
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