fe·​ver | \ ˈfē-vər How to pronounce fever (audio) \

Definition of fever

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a rise of body temperature above the normal
b : any of various diseases of which fever is a prominent symptom
2a : a state of heightened or intense emotion or activity
b : a contagious usually transient enthusiasm : craze


fevered; fevering\ ˈfē-​vriŋ How to pronounce fever (audio) , ˈfe-​vər-​iŋ \

Definition of fever (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to throw into a fever : agitate

intransitive verb

: to contract or be in a fever : become feverish

Examples of fever in a Sentence

Noun The symptoms of the disease include headache and fever. We waited in a fever of anticipation. He had us all in a fever with worry.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But since the pandemic began, health authorities have emphasized a few hallmark signs, namely coughing and fever. Jamie Ducharme, Time, 11 Jan. 2022 Rheumatic fever at the age of 4 left Basinski color blind, and was the reason he wasn’t drafted during World War II. oregonlive, 10 Jan. 2022 Sore throats that are simultaneously noticeable with any other cold symptom, particularly a harsh fever or respiratory congestion, should prompt you to seek a COVID-19 test as soon as possible. Zee Krstic, Good Housekeeping, 9 Jan. 2022 When Jane Peng's 13-year-old daughter spiked a fever and started vomiting Monday, Peng quickly used a home test kit. Eric Levenson And Christina Zdanowicz, CNN, 9 Jan. 2022 The nation’s divisiveness on race issues, laid bare by the civil-rights movement, was approaching a fever-pitch just as his career took flight in the late 1950s. R.t. Watson, WSJ, 7 Jan. 2022 While the bacterial infection could be deadly, victims are typically sick for three or four days, with symptoms that could include severe stomach cramps, bloody diarrhea, vomiting and a mild fever. NBC News, 7 Jan. 2022 For nearly five years, the lingering hope of the pundit class (and, notably, the Biden campaign) was that the Trump fever would eventually burn itself out and those so afflicted would awake from its throes eager to be normal again. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 6 Jan. 2022 With a measured, strenuously researched approach, the documentary traces how the Trump presidency fomented a political fever through social media and denied whatever facts didn't fit its narrative. Julie Hinds, Detroit Free Press, 6 Jan. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Omicron symptoms range from sore throat and body aches to fever and cough. Leada Gore | Lgore@al.com, al, 10 Jan. 2022 The most common side effects are pain at the injection site and fatigue, headache, chills, and fever a day or two after the second dose. Fortune, 18 Oct. 2021 Within a year, Stephen succumbed to fever and Henry II became the first Plantagenet monarch. Stephen Brumwell, WSJ, 17 Oct. 2021 Moreover, the symptoms of Covid — primarily fever higher than 102 degrees Fahrenheit for at least three days — are known to cause fertility issues, especially in men. NBC News, 12 Oct. 2021 Eating food that is contaminated with Salmonella can cause a bacterial food borne illness called salmonellosis which can cause diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating the product. Christina Maxouris, CNN, 10 Aug. 2021 Others could include fatigue, chills, and fever throughout the body, but these tend to go away, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. La Risa R. Lynch, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 8 July 2021 Mainly fever, with some patients experiencing fatigue, a dry cough, and difficulty breathing. Jason Gale, Fortune, 22 Jan. 2020 Symptoms can range from asthma or cold-like symptoms to fever and chest pain, according to the department. Chelsea Curtis, The Arizona Republic, 25 June 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fever.' 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 fever


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1606, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for fever


Middle English, from Old English fēfer, from Latin febris

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Time Traveler for fever

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The first known use of fever was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near fever

feux d'artifice


fever and ague

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Statistics for fever

Last Updated

14 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Fever.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fever. Accessed 18 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for fever



English Language Learners Definition of fever

: a body temperature that is higher than normal
: a disease that causes an increase in body temperature
: a state of excited emotion or activity


fe·​ver | \ ˈfē-vər How to pronounce fever (audio) \

Kids Definition of fever

1 : a body temperature that is higher than normal
2 : a disease involving fever


fe·​ver | \ ˈfē-vər How to pronounce fever (audio) \

Medical Definition of fever

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a rise of body temperature above the normal whether a natural response (as to infection) or artificially induced for therapeutic reasons
2 : an abnormal bodily state characterized by increased production of heat, accelerated heart action and pulse, and systemic debility with weakness, loss of appetite, and thirst
3 : any of various diseases of which fever is a prominent symptom


fevered; fevering\ ˈfēv-​(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce fever (audio) \

Medical Definition of fever (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to affect with fever the malarial plasmodia fevered him

intransitive verb

: to contract or be in a fever : be or become feverish the malaria victim fevered intermittently

More from Merriam-Webster on fever

Nglish: Translation of fever for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fever for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about fever


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