\ˈgas \
plural gases also gasses

Definition of gas 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a fluid (such as air) that has neither independent shape nor volume but tends to expand indefinitely

2a : a combustible gas or gaseous mixture for fuel or lighting especially : natural gas

b : a gaseous product of digestion also : discomfort from this

c : a gas or gaseous mixture used to produce anesthesia

d : a substance that can be used to produce a poisonous, suffocating, or physically irritating atmosphere

3 : empty talk : bombast His talk about quitting his job was all gas.

4 : gasoline also : the accelerator pedal of an automotive vehicle

5 : driving force : energy I was young, and full of gas— H. L. Mencken ran out of gas in the seventh inning

6 slang : something that gives pleasure : delight the party was a gas

7 baseball, informal : fast and powerfully thrown pitches : smoke sense 8 That's Nate on the mound in the glossy photo in his dad's office, throwing gas in some Little League game.— Austin Murphy


gassed; gassing

Definition of gas (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to talk idly or garrulously

2 : to give off gas (see gas entry 1 sense 1)

3 : to fill the tank (as of an automobile) with gasoline usually used with up

transitive verb

1 : to supply with gas or especially gasoline gas up the car

2a : to treat chemically with gas

b : to poison or otherwise affect adversely with gas

3 slang : to please greatly

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Examples of gas in a Sentence


Carbon monoxide is a poisonous gas. We heat our house with gas. Do you have a gas stove or an electric one? The car gets good gas mileage. The car almost ran out of gas. He was driving with one foot on the gas and one foot on the brake.


soldiers gassed on the battlefield We stopped to gas the car.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

That group included families with small children, who attempted to hide under the train to avoid the gas. Dara Lind, Vox, "How a march at the US-Mexico border descended into tear gas and chaos," 26 Nov. 2018 The first-generation model got 36 miles of electric range before the gas kicked in, while later versions would get 53 miles of electric range. Andrew J. Hawkins, The Verge, "GM is laying off thousands of workers, closing three plants, and ending production of the Chevy Volt," 26 Nov. 2018 These are little plastic pieces that let the gas generated from fermentation flow out and prevent new air from flowing in. Casey Johnston, Ars Technica, "Store-bought is not enough: My first hard cider homebrew," 22 Nov. 2018 Members of the study team think the gas is indeed misaligned with the black hole's rotation in PG211+143. Elizabeth Howell,, "The Stuff Falling into This Black Hole Is Moving at Almost 56,000 Miles a Second!," 25 Sep. 2018 When indoors, the gas can build up to dangerous levels — especially in modern eco-conscious homes. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "SAFETY ALERT: Your Carbon Monoxide Alarm Probably Just Expired This Year," 21 Sep. 2018 The lighting of the corner gas lamppost determined the official start of the summer night. Jacques Kelly,, "Remembering Baltimore's magical glow from gaslights on a summer night," 14 July 2018 The gases are modern-day versions of ether, first discovered in the mid-1800s. Ronald S. Litman,, "Should I worry about my child being allergic to anesthesia?," 9 July 2018 Under the increases, gas was to go up by 38 percent, diesel by 47 percent and kerosene by 51 percent. Jacqueline Charles, miamiherald, "Flights slowly resume in Haiti after gas price hike reversed but tensions remain high," 8 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Treblinka’s victims were transported there in cattle cars and gassed to death almost immediately upon arrival. Kristen De Groot, The Seattle Times, "1st US public Holocaust memorial merges past with new tech," 22 Oct. 2018 The person who sees football as a medium through which to gas up their mates; nothing more, nothing less., "7 Types of Friends Who Always Show Up on Game Night," 19 Feb. 2018 Instead, the scientists found that the best explanation for the altered path would in fact be from out-gassing – the kinds of emissions that could theoretically produce the tail of a comet. Amina Khan,, "'Oumuamua, the mysterious visitor from outside the solar system, is a comet after all," 28 June 2018 Nurkic was gassed in the first quarter because of that activity, Stotts said. Andrew Greif,, "Blazers lose 8th consecutive playoff game: 7 takeaways from Portland's Game 2 loss to New Orleans," 18 Apr. 2018 Nakagawa and key members produced sarin at a cult compound and sprayed it from a van, in what was later regarded as an experiment for the subsequent subway gassing. Washington Post, "Cult leader executed for Japan sarin attacks still a mystery," 6 July 2018 But here is the use, the crossing of that red line that the previous administration set where innocent people are being gassed with weapons that the regime isn't supposed to have at all. Fox News, "Mixed media verdict on Syria bombing," 16 Apr. 2018 Hitler, who had served with German Jews in the war, spread the idea that Jews had been the enemy within, proposing that the German Army would have won had some of them been gassed to death. Timothy Snyder, New York Times, "How Did the Nazis Gain Power in Germany?," 14 June 2018 He was gassed and wounded on June 12, according to a small pocket diary his descendants keep as a memento. Virginia Mayo,, "Marines’ bravery celebrated 100 years after French battle," 27 May 2018

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


1779, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1852, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for gas


New Latin, alteration of Latin chaos space, chaos


derivative of gas entry 1

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Learn More about gas

Dictionary Entries near gas






gas attack


Statistics for gas

Last Updated

6 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for gas

The first known use of gas was in 1779

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More Definitions for gas



English Language Learners Definition of gas

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a substance (such as oxygen or hydrogen) that is like air and has no fixed shape

: a gas or mixture of gases that is burned as a fuel

: gas in your stomach and intestines that causes pain or discomfort



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

: to poison or kill (someone) with gas

: to put gasoline in (a car, truck, etc.)


\ˈgas \
plural gases

Kids Definition of gas

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a substance (as oxygen or hydrogen) having no fixed shape and tending to expand without limit

3 : a gas or a mixture of gases used to make a person unconscious (as for an operation)

4 : a substance that poisons the air or makes breathing difficult

5 : gasoline

6 : a gaseous product of digestion or the discomfort caused by it


gassed; gassing; gasses

Kids Definition of gas (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to poison with gas “Her boy was gassed in the trenches,” Grandma said.— Richard Peck, A Year Down Yonder

2 : to supply with gas Gas up the car.


\ˈgas \
plural gases also gasses

Medical Definition of gas 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a fluid (as air) that has neither independent shape nor volume but tends to expand indefinitely

2 : a gaseous product of digestion also : discomfort from this

3 : a gas or gaseous mixture used to produce anesthesia

4 : a substance that can be used to produce a poisonous, asphyxiating, or irritant atmosphere

gassed; gassing

Medical Definition of gas (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to treat chemically with gas

2 : to poison or otherwise affect adversely with gas

Medical Definition of GAS (Entry 3 of 3)

general adaptation syndrome

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More from Merriam-Webster on gas

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with gas

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for gas

Spanish Central: Translation of gas

Nglish: Translation of gas for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gas for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about gas

Comments on gas

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


to move with a clumsy heavy tread

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