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 And, ABC News Foreign Correspondent Julia Macfarlane reports from London on the fury over Sarah Everard's killing and the police response. Rick Klein, Averi Harper, ABC News, "Biden faces messaging distractions as sales pitch begins: The Note," 15 Mar. 2021 Photographs of him mingling set off a fury up and down the state. New York Times, "How Gavin Newsom Landed in a California Jam," 27 Apr. 2021 Smith also had a strong individual day, combining fury with strategy to sweep the hurdles events. Dallas News, "2021 Class 6A Region II track and field meet: DeSoto girls dominate to win title, Cedar Hill boys place third," 25 Apr. 2021 Nobody was dressed for rain though it had been predicted to come down at the precise moment of the parade with a force and a fury that had not been seen since the San Francisco Giants last victory parade in 2014. Sam Whiting, San Francisco Chronicle, "Yachting season opener makes a comeback, live and on the water," 25 Apr. 2021 Europe’s rebel soccer league crumbled just 48 hours following its launch, after its biggest members began to exit amid fury from the sport’s authorities, politicians and fans. Rodrigo Orihuela, Fortune, "Not so super: breakaway soccer league teeters on the brink of collapse before playing a single match," 21 Apr. 2021 When you are left at the mercy of the state and given no option to heal, fury becomes your voice and your only tool. Justin Ellis, Star Tribune, "Minnesota is armed and ready to defend its investment in whiteness," 19 Apr. 2021 Punk fury plus puppet fuzzy makes for a totally rad music-video. Matt Wake | Mwake@al.com, al, "This Muscle Shoals band’s puppet-starring music-video is awesome," 9 Apr. 2021 That limitation has frequently caused the majority party consternation over the years, but with Democrats holding the narrowest of majorities in the upper chamber, progressive fury has reached a fever pitch. Philip Wallach, National Review, "The Perils of Making Reconciliation a Filibuster Workaround," 8 Apr. 2021

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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Learn More about fury

Time Traveler for fury

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for fury

Last Updated

14 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Fury.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fury. Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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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

Comments on fury

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