fire·​bug ˈfī(-ə)r-ˌbəg How to pronounce firebug (audio)

Example Sentences

after the second suspicious fire, police set a trap for the firebug
Recent Examples on the Web Rogers reviewed call logs to guess their likely next target and alerted officers, who nabbed the firebugs in action. Jennifer Brett, ajc, 28 Sep. 2019 Some, like the radiantly red firebug, mutate aesthetically, their normally symmetrical designs warped and fractured. National Geographic, 30 Apr. 2018 There’s also a young son who is a firebug — and a cliche. Mark Kennedy, idahostatesman, 14 Dec. 2017 The measured pace and minimalism isn’t for everyone, but the firebug’s escalating, evolving motivations keep the film engaging. Seattle Times Staff, The Seattle Times, 25 May 2017

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

Word History

First Known Use

1869, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of firebug was in 1869

Dictionary Entries Near firebug

Cite this Entry

“Firebug.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition


fire·​bug -ˌbəg How to pronounce firebug (audio)
: a person who deliberately sets destructive fires : arsonist

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