con·​fla·​gra·​tion | \ ˌkän-flə-ˈgrā-shən How to pronounce conflagration (audio) \

Definition of conflagration

1 : fire especially : a large disastrous fire The conflagration destroyed the warehouses.
2 : conflict, war The conflagration between the two countries lasted for ten years.

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Synonyms for conflagration


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Examples of conflagration in a Sentence

The treaty is the latest attempt to resolve the ten-year conflagration. the historic tavern burned to the ground in a horrible conflagration
Recent Examples on the Web Still, thanks more to luck than anything else, Anchorage has never had a city-wide fire like the 1906 Fairbanks conflagration that destroyed more than 70 buildings. David Reamer, Anchorage Daily News, "Mud, fires and bootlegging: What daily life looked like in the early years of Anchorage," 9 Nov. 2020 The report does not indicate whether the preemptive backfire or the larger conflagration ultimately burned Jones. Matthias Gafni,, "Exclusive: Firefighting tactics went wrong in death of contractor, near-fatal injury to inmate," 25 Oct. 2020 But in many ways, 9/11 — and the epochal conflagration that followed — feels distant. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, "Is the 9/11 era over?," 11 Sep. 2020 The prospect of a Biden victory also holds forth the tantalizing possibility of a conflagration between the progressive and moderate wings of the Democratic Party. Cameron Hilditch, National Review, "Republicans’ Choice: Trump or 2024?," 2 Nov. 2020 Azerbaijan is supported by NATO member Turkey, while Russia supports Armenia, making the area a potential conflagration zone. Erin Blakemore, National Geographic, "How the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict has been shaped by past empires," 15 Oct. 2020 The terrifying conflagration consumed three square miles, including much of the downtown, and left 90,000 homeless, rich and poor alike. Richard Babcock, WSJ, "‘Chicago’s Great Fire’ Review: Rising From the Ashes," 16 Oct. 2020 That conflagration and the Glass Fire racing through 36,200 acres of Wine Country have sent tens of thousands of residents fleeing, and detroyed homes and other buildings. Nanette Asimov,, "Newsom declares state of emergency in 3 counties: Napa, Sonoma and Shasta, as fires rage," 28 Sep. 2020 Yet in the decade since the Arab Spring uprisings began in 2010, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been just one conflagration among many in the region, often overshadowed by far bloodier tragedies in Syria, Yemen and Libya. Yaroslav Trofimov, WSJ, "The Gulf Arabs Weary of Protesting for Palestine," 9 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'conflagration.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of conflagration

1600, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for conflagration

Latin conflagration-, conflagratio, from conflagrare — see conflagrant

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Time Traveler for conflagration

Time Traveler

The first known use of conflagration was in 1600

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Statistics for conflagration

Last Updated

22 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Conflagration.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Nov. 2020.

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How to pronounce conflagration (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of conflagration

: a large destructive fire
: a war or conflict


con·​fla·​gra·​tion | \ ˌkän-flə-ˈgrā-shən How to pronounce conflagration (audio) \

Kids Definition of conflagration

: a large destructive fire

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