fire·​fight | \ˈfī(-ə)r-ˌfīt \

Definition of firefight 

1a : a usually brief intense exchange of fire between opposing military units

b : a hostile confrontation that involves gunfire

Examples of firefight in a Sentence

a firefight between police and bank robbers

Recent Examples on the Web

In the April 30 incident, Army Spec. Gabriel D. Conde, 22, was shot by enemy fighters in a firefight in Kapisa province while providing security for U.S. Special Operations troops. Dan Lamothe, Washington Post, "One U.S. service member killed, two wounded, in apparent insider attack in Afghanistan," 7 July 2018 In July, the police and black snipers engaged in a firefight in Cleveland. New York Times, "How Robert Kennedy’s Assassination Changed American Politics," 1 June 2018 Between that and the cold, almost nothing would grow, ensuring those who didn’t die in the nuclear firefight soon would of starvation. Alex Ward, Vox, "This is exactly how a nuclear war would kill you," 19 Oct. 2018 Mararv hauled himself away from the firefight, hoping to use his radio to reach Molteno, but there was no signal. Tristan Mcconnell, GQ, "The Bloody Toll of Congo's Elephant Wars," 16 Apr. 2018 However, another military official familiar with the Dec. 6 firefight, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, offered a different portrayal of the events. Charlie Savage, Eric Schmitt And Thomas Gibbons-neff, New York Times, "U.S. Kept Silent About Its Role in Another Firefight in Niger," 14 Mar. 2018 The city’s police chief, Abur Razzaq Cheema, said six officers were wounded in an hours-long firefight. Washington Post, "Gunmen kill police officer’s son, uncle in Pakistan," 20 June 2018 Out on the Hillsborough River and the surrounding city, the U.S. and allied SOF used tech in a battle scenario complete with helicopters, firefights, fast boats and more. Allison Barrie, Fox News, "SOFIC: Where Special Operations shop for cutting-edge weapons," 24 May 2018 One officer sustained a gunshot wound in the wrist during the firefight, police say, and Williams’ body was found in the house. Josh Magness, miamiherald, "He asked her, ‘Wanna be famous?’ on Facebook Live — then fired his rifle, La. cops say | Miami Herald," 13 Apr. 2018

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

1899, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

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The first known use of firefight was in 1899

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English Language Learners Definition of firefight

: a battle in which people shoot guns; especially : a usually short and fast gunfight between opposing military units

More from Merriam-Webster on firefight

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with firefight

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