fire·​ball | \ ˈfī(-ə)r-ˌbȯl How to pronounce fireball (audio) \

Definition of fireball

1 : a ball of fire also : something resembling such a ball the primordial fireball associated with the beginning of the universe Scientific American
2 : a brilliant meteor that may trail bright sparks
3 : the highly luminous cloud of vapor and dust created by a nuclear explosion
4 : a highly energetic person

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Synonyms for fireball


dynamo, live wire, pistol

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Examples of fireball in a Sentence

The house erupted into a fireball. what this club needs is a fireball who will bring some sorely needed energy and enthusiasm

Recent Examples on the Web

Video posted to social media showed what appeared to be a large fireball and flames. NBC News, "One dead in Kentucky after gas line explosion shoots fireball into sky," 1 Aug. 2019 Testimony from witnesses in the class said the demonstration that resulted in the fireball came as Poole was restarting the experiment for students who got to class late. Fox News, "Former NYC student awarded nearly $60M after chemistry experiment left him severely disfigured," 3 July 2019 But just moments after a seemingly successful ignition, the rocket lit up again in a fireball and had to be doused. Loren Grush, The Verge, "SpaceX’s test rocket catches fire after engine test," 17 July 2019 While the video describes that the engine fire test duration went as expected, fire continued to burn around the Starhopper until a massive fireball exploded around it a few minutes after pluming up high over the test area into the night sky. Richard Tribou,, "Video shows SpaceX Starhopper engulfed in fireball during test," 15 July 2019 Yanes, now 21, was 16 when a fireball erupted from an experiment conducted by his teacher, Anna Poole, at Beacon High School in January 2014. Janelle Griffith, NBC News, "He was engulfed in flames when a school chemistry experiment erupted. He just won $60M.," 2 July 2019 The unmanned spy plane, which cost more than a hundred million dollars, and had a wingspan of a hundred and thirty feet, exploded in a fireball. Robin Wright, The New Yorker, "What Will Follow Trump’s Cancelled Strike on Iran?," 21 June 2019 News video shows a massive fireball shooting flames into the sky. Dallas News, "Dallas company owns stake in Philadelphia refinery where explosion occurred," 21 June 2019 The center yellow circle is the fireball radius — that is, the mushroom cloud — which would extend out about 0.25 square miles. Alex Ward, Vox, "This is exactly how a nuclear war would kill you," 19 Oct. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for fireball

Last Updated

6 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for fireball

The first known use of fireball was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for fireball



English Language Learners Definition of fireball

: a huge mass of fire

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More from Merriam-Webster on fireball

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fireball

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fireball

Spanish Central: Translation of fireball

Nglish: Translation of fireball for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about fireball

Comments on fireball

What made you want to look up fireball? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a period when something is suspended

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