flare

noun
\ ˈfler How to pronounce flare (audio) \

Definition of flare

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a fire or blaze of light used especially to signal, illuminate, or attract attention also : a device or composition used to produce such a flare The airport set flares to guide the landing plane at night.
2 : an unsteady glaring light
b : solar flare also : a sudden increase and decrease in the brightness of a star often amounting to a difference of several magnitudes (see magnitude sense 3)
3a : a sudden outburst (as of excitement or anger) a flare of tempers in the courtroom
b : flare-up sense 3 a flare of disease
4a : a spreading outward also : a place or part that spreads
b : an area of skin flush a flare of reddened skin
5 : light resulting from reflection (as between lens surfaces) or an effect of this light (such as a fogged or dense area in a photographic negative)
6a : a short pass in football thrown to a back who is running toward the sideline
b : a weakly hit fly ball in baseball a flare into short right field
7 flares plural : pants that flare toward the bottom

flare

verb
flared; flaring

Definition of flare (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to burn with an unsteady flame
b : to stream in the wind
2a : to shine with a sudden light a match flares in the darkness
b(1) : to become suddenly excited or angry usually used with up
(2) : to break out or intensify usually suddenly or violently often used with up
c : to express strong emotion (such as anger)
3 : to open or spread outward the pants flare at the bottom

transitive verb

1 : to display conspicuously flaring her scarf to attract attention
2 : to cause to flare the breeze flares the candle
3 : to signal with a flare or by flaring
4 : to burn (a jet of waste gas) in the open air

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Synonyms for flare

Synonyms: Noun

burst, flare-up, flash, flicker, flurry, flutter, outbreak, outburst, spurt

Synonyms: Verb

beat, blaze, burn, flame, glare

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Examples of flare in a Sentence

Noun

the sudden flare of the match When the crew saw flares, they knew the other ship was in trouble.

Verb

pants that flare at the bottom The bull flared its nostrils.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Given Trump's ability to swing wildly between topics, Iran surely must still fear a sudden flare-up. Nick Paton Walsh, CNN, "John Bolton's firing won't end the confusion over US foreign policy," 11 Sep. 2019 Michigan is seeing a flare-up this year of the virus that Hardenbrook said all but turned her brain to mush. Kristen Jordan Shamus, USA TODAY, "Eastern equine encephalitis: Mom shares how she survived the rare mosquito-borne virus," 10 Sep. 2019 Doctors usually prescribe medicines to alleviate symptoms, prevent flare-ups, and minimize organ damage. Samantha Lauriello, Health.com, "Kim Kardashian Thinks She Has Lupus in New 'KUWTK' Trailer—but What Does That Mean?," 6 Sep. 2019 The flare-up involved a metal alloy heating compartment at the Southeast Harney Drive plant. oregonlive, "3 Precision Castparts workers injured at SE Portland plant," 4 Sep. 2019 Brazil’s National Space Research Institute documented almost 4000 flare-ups in just two days. Fox News, "Brazil's tourism ambassador threatens to 'choke' Macron, says he is 'sleeping with a dragon'," 3 Sep. 2019 There's now a bevy of soothing washes, moisturizers, lightweight lotions, and thick body creams on the market that target the symptoms of eczema and aid in both taming flare-ups, as well as keeping the aforementioned issues at bay. Allure, "The Best Eczema Products to Relieve Itch, According to Dermatologists," 2 Sep. 2019 As far as triggers go, there are a few different causes for a pustular psoriasis flare-up, according to the NPF, including different medications, pregnancy, overexposure to UV light, infections, and emotional stress. Lambeth Hochwald, Health.com, "What to Know About Pustular Psoriasis, According to Dermatologists," 29 Aug. 2019 The northbound 2 Freeway at the 134 Freeway remained closed as firefighters mopped up in the area while keeping an eye out for flare-ups. Glendale News-Press, "Portion of 2 Freeway in Glendale remains closed as crews battle Eagle Rock brush fire," 26 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Be careful with this one—your baby fever is definitely going to flare up. Cady Drell, Marie Claire, "45 Classic Movies to Watch If You Love Rom-Coms," 9 Sep. 2019 As fires behind her begin to flare up, her wings also become ablaze. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Billie Eilish's Terrifying Video for "all the good girls go to hell" Has Fans Freaking Out," 4 Sep. 2019 Oil explorers in West Texas are producing record amounts of gas as a by-product of crude drilling, and without new pipelines, their only option is to flare the gas into the sky. BostonGlobe.com, "Stories you may have missed from the world of business," 22 July 2019 But governments are run by vote-seeking politicians, who might print more money to juice short-term growth needed to win re-election, inadvertently causing inflation to flare up later. Gwynn Guilford, Quartz, "The quiet campaign to reinstate the gold standard is getting louder," 3 July 2019 In this position, your ribs naturally want to flare out and your back naturally wants to arch, Mansour explains, which would be incorrect form and would potentially place undue stress on your lower back. Jenny Mccoy, SELF, "Naomi Campbell Trains While She Travels With This One Versatile Core Move," 23 Nov. 2018 The move tends to flare up in hot job markets when job seekers have more power. Kathryn Vasel, CNN, "The job market is so good, new hires aren't showing up for their first day of work," 16 Sep. 2019 The dangerous but rare Eastern equine encephalitis virus is flaring up in Michigan, state health officials say, and has been confirmed in two people in Berrien and Kalamazoo counties and is suspected in five more people. Kristen Jordan Shamus, Detroit Free Press, "7 cases of dangerous encephalitis investigated in Michigan: What you need to know," 31 Aug. 2019 Still, the problem persisted and flared up again this August. Patrick Saunders, The Denver Post, "Rockies’ Jon Gray: “I want be the guy players want to play behind”," 31 Aug. 2019

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

Noun

1580, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1616, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for flare

Noun and Verb

origin unknown

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Statistics for flare

Last Updated

19 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for flare

The first known use of flare was in 1580

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More Definitions for flare

flare

noun

English Language Learners Definition of flare

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a light that shines brightly and briefly
: a very bright light that is used to give a signal, to light up something, or to attract attention also : a device that produces such a light
: a sudden expression of anger

flare

verb

English Language Learners Definition of flare (Entry 2 of 2)

: to shine or burn suddenly and briefly
: to become suddenly excited, angry, or active
: to open or spread outward

flare

verb
\ ˈfler How to pronounce flare (audio) \
flared; flaring

Kids Definition of flare

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to burn with an unsteady flame … they watched the fire … flaring through the fog …— Charles Dickens, The Cricket on the Hearth
2 : to shine or burn suddenly or briefly A match flared in the darkness.
3 : to become angry or active She flared up at the remarks. His asthma has flared up.
4 : to spread outward Her nostrils flared.

flare

noun

Kids Definition of flare (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a sudden blaze of light the flare of a match
2 : a blaze of light used to signal, light up something, or attract attention
3 : a device or material used to produce a flare The emergency kit included flares.
4 : a sudden outburst She displayed a flare of anger.
5 : a spreading outward : a part that spreads outward the flare of a skirt
\ ˈfla(ə)r, ˈfle(ə)r How to pronounce flare (audio) \
flared; flaring

Medical Definition of flare

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to break out or intensify rapidly : become suddenly worse or more painful often used with up your gallstones flare up— W. A. Nolen

flare

noun

Medical Definition of flare (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : flare-up Without effective urate lowering, many such patients progress to severe chronic gout characterized by frequent arthritic flares— John S. Sundy et al., The Journal of the American Medical Association, 17 Aug. 2011
2 : an area of skin flush resulting from and spreading out from a local center of vascular dilation and hyperemia urticarial flare
3 : a cloudy or smoky appearance of the fluid of the anterior chamber of the eye that is seen when a beam of light (as from a slit lamp) is passed through it and that is caused by the presence of floating protein material in the fluid which is a symptom of inflammation Flare means that we can actually see the beam of light from the slit lamp traveling through the aqueous humor. This is similar to being able to see the beam of light coming from a movie projector in a dusty room.— Jay B. Lavine, The Eye Care Sourcebook, 2001

called also aqueous flare

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More from Merriam-Webster on flare

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with flare

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for flare

Spanish Central: Translation of flare

Nglish: Translation of flare for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flare for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about flare

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