con·​fla·​gra·​tion ˌkän-flə-ˈgrā-shən How to pronounce conflagration (audio)
: fire
especially : a large disastrous fire
The conflagration destroyed the warehouses.
: conflict, war
The conflagration between the two countries lasted for ten years.

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 Violence escalated, culminating in the conflagration of 2003–5, which cost the lives of more than 300,000 people. Alex De Waal, Foreign Affairs, 18 Sep. 2023 Burning Man’s ten principles—radical inclusion, gifting, decommodification, radical self-reliance, radical self-expression, communal effort, civic responsibility, leaving no trace, participation, and immediacy—are not exclusive to a late-August party in Nevada capped by ritual conflagrations. Matthew Hutson, The New Yorker, 8 Sep. 2023 Land-use changes and the presence of non-native grasses also played a role in the conflagration. Susanne Rust, Los Angeles Times, 11 Aug. 2023 The drink fittingly includes poblano liqueur as a nod to the dish served, salt colored with volcanic ash referring to the conflagration, and a wafer of artisanal chocolate as a garnish and tip of the hat to the title. Hugh Garvey, Sunset Magazine, 31 Aug. 2023 Wildfire researchers had warned for years, including in a report prepared for the county in 2020, that West Maui was highly susceptible to such conflagrations. Annabelle Timsit, Washington Post, 14 Aug. 2023 What Yuskavage ultimately seeks to provoke, in this view, is empathy: for the figure, for the painter, for the victimizer and the victimized, the low and the high, the self who is staring, lost, at the conflagration of color. Ariel Levy, The New Yorker, 31 July 2023 Perhaps most importantly, using Russian funds to ameliorate Ukrainian damages could set a precedent to ultimately avoid future conflagrations. Rafi Schwartz, The Week, 28 July 2023 Two weeks after a conflagration consumed Lahaina, St. Clair is among the lucky - homeless, but alive. Karin Brulliard and Emily Wax-Thibodeaux, Anchorage Daily News, 25 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'conflagration.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin conflagration-, conflagratio, from conflagrare — see conflagrant

First Known Use

1600, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of conflagration was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near conflagration

Cite this Entry

“Conflagration.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


con·​fla·​gra·​tion ˌkän-flə-ˈgrā-shən How to pronounce conflagration (audio)
: a large disastrous fire

More from Merriam-Webster on conflagration

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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