1 a (1)
: the phenomenon of combustion manifested in light, flame, and heat
: one of the four elements of the alchemists
- air, water, fire, and earth
: burning passion : ardor
- young lovers with their hearts full of fire
: liveliness of imagination : inspiration
- the force and fire of his oratory
: fuel in a state of combustion (as on a hearth)
- warmed his hands at the crackling fire
: a small gas or electric space heater
: a destructive burning (as of a building)
- The shack was destroyed by a fire.
: death or torture by fire
- He confessed under threat of the fire.
: severe trial or ordeal
- He had proved himself in the fire of battle.
: the firing of weapons (such as firearms, artillery, or missiles)
- The troops were ordered to cease fire. [=stop shooting]
: the bullets, shells, etc., that are discharged
- They opened fire on [=began shooting at] the enemy.
— see also friendly fire — compare counterfire
- The soldiers endured heavy fire.
: intense verbal attack or criticism
- His remarks have provoked heavy fire from his political opponents.
: a rapidly delivered series (as of remarks)
: being consumed by fire : aflame
: exposed to fire from an enemy's weapons
- The soldier showed courage under fire.
: under attack
- The company has come under fire for its discriminatory hiring policies.