fu·​ry | \ ˈfyu̇r-ē How to pronounce fury (audio) , ˈfyər-\
plural furies

Definition of fury

1 : intense, disordered, and often destructive rage
2a capitalized : any of the avenging deities in Greek mythology who torment criminals and inflict plagues
b : an avenging spirit
c : one who resembles an avenging spirit especially : a spiteful woman
3 : extreme fierceness or violence
4 : a state of inspired exaltation : frenzy

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Choose the Right Synonym for fury

anger, ire, rage, fury, indignation, wrath mean an intense emotional state induced by displeasure. anger, the most general term, names the reaction but by itself does not convey cause or intensity. tried to hide his anger ire, more frequent in literary contexts, suggests an intense anger, often with an evident display of feeling. cheeks flushed with ire rage and fury suggest loss of self-control from violence of emotion. shook with rage could not contain his fury indignation stresses righteous anger at what one considers unfair, mean, or shameful. a comment that caused general indignation wrath is likely to suggest a desire or intent to punish or get revenge. I feared her wrath if I was discovered

Dire Straits and Furies

Dire and fury share a history in Roman mythology, as each of these words is connected to the Erinyes, the avenging and terrifying deities of ancient myth who tormented criminals. The Romans referred to these goddesses as either the Dirae or the Furiae. The former is from the Latin word dirus, from which dire is descended, and the latter comes from furere, from where we get fury. The word dire is often found in conjunction with straits; in dire straits is used of a situation that is very bad or difficult. Our records indicate that this phrase began to be used in English at the end of the 18th century, when it appeared in Francis Fawkes’s The Argonautics of Apollonius Rhodius: “When now the heroes through the vast profound, Reach the dire straits with rocks encompass’d round.”

Examples of fury in a Sentence

I could see the fury in her eyes. Nothing could contain his fury over their accusations. He turned away from them in fury. The hurricane unleashed its fury on hundreds of homes and businesses.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Kevin Mazur/TAS18Getty Images The white-hot fury of the Swifties found a new target this week: Charli XCX, who supported Taylor alongside Camila Cabello on her Reputation stadium tour. Emily Dixon, Marie Claire, "Charli XCX Clarified Her Taylor Swift Comments After Swifties Reacted," 7 Aug. 2019 After the announcement, Jeff Roe, Ted Cruz’s former campaign manager, called Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and reminded him of Trump’s fury at Pompeo’s Kansas caucus speech. Susan B. Glasser, The New Yorker, "Mike Pompeo, the Secretary of Trump," 19 Aug. 2019 The title doesn’t lie: The action sequences are as fast as ever (even if the movie as a whole, at 137 minutes, is in no particular hurry), and as Hobbs and Shaw, Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham deliver more than their share of the requisite fury. Los Angeles Times, "Review: ‘Hobbs & Shaw’ doesn’t quite hit that ‘Fast & Furious’ sweet spot," 1 Aug. 2019 Beautifully translated by Antonia Lloyd-Jones, Olga Tokarczuk’s Drive Your Plow over the Bones of the Dead (Riverhead Books, $27) is a riveting whodunit with a black-ice surface of fairy-tale charm and a white-hot core of moral fury. Julian Lucas, Harper's magazine, "New Books," 22 July 2019 So will anything actually change about the way the music biz operates as a result of Swift's fury? Maria Puente, USA TODAY, "Taylor Swift's outrage over Scooter Braun: Will it change the music industry?," 3 July 2019 The decision brought howls of fury from all over Spain – but Villa made his manager look like a genius, with 14 goals in 22 competitive games and the Euro 2008 title before Aragones stepped down. SI.com, "Luis Aragones: Spain's Most Important Manager's All-Time Best XI," 24 June 2019 After the storm of fury, DeAngelo would go inside, only to return minutes later to repeat the mad dialogue, sometimes hours past midnight. Tribune News Service, oregonlive.com, "The Man in the Window: Closing in on DeAngelo (Part Four)," 23 June 2019 In other news, the iconic British retailer will also no longer be disposing of unwanted and unsold stock by destroying it, after the practice sparked a firestorm of fury both inside and outside of the fashion industry. Michelle Gant, Fox News, "Burberry bans fur, stops destroying unsold goods," 6 Sep. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for fury

Middle English furie, from Latin furia, from furere to rage

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Statistics for fury

Last Updated

9 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for fury

The first known use of fury was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for fury



English Language Learners Definition of fury

: violent anger
: wild and dangerous force


fu·​ry | \ ˈfyu̇r-ē How to pronounce fury (audio) \
plural furies

Kids Definition of fury

1 : violent anger : rage
2 : wild and dangerous force the fury of the storm

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More from Merriam-Webster on fury

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fury

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fury

Spanish Central: Translation of fury

Nglish: Translation of fury for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fury for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about fury

Comments on fury

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


formidable, illustrious, or eminent

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