ig·​nite | \ ig-ˈnīt How to pronounce ignite (audio) \
ignited; igniting

Definition of ignite

transitive verb

1a : to set afire also : kindle
b : to cause (a fuel) to burn
2 : to subject to fire or intense heat especially : to render luminous by heat
3a : to heat up : excite oppression that ignited the hatred of the people
b : to set in motion : spark ignite a debate

intransitive verb

1 : to catch fire
2 : to begin to glow

Other Words from ignite

ignitability \ ig-​ˌnī-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce ignite (audio) \ noun
ignitable or less commonly ignitible \ ig-​ˈnī-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce ignite (audio) \ adjective
igniter or less commonly ignitor \ ig-​ˈnī-​tər How to pronounce ignite (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for ignite



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Examples of ignite in a Sentence

The fire was ignited by sparks. The paper ignited on contact with sparks. a material that ignites easily Three wins in a row ignited the team. His proposal is igniting opposition.
Recent Examples on the Web The Minnesota Lynx had just trimmed the Connecticut Sun’s lead to single digits toward the start of the third quarter, but Hiedeman responded right back to ignite a run for her team. Lila Bromberg, Hartford Courant, 14 Aug. 2022 Watkins concluded that a wind gust opened the can lid, enabling sunlight magnified by the glass bottles to ignite the paper. CBS News, 29 July 2022 The goal is for on-the-ground events, strategically located in university towns, to ignite a young, engaged user base for the app in North America that then spreads to a wider audience. Wired, 26 July 2022 The single-tail star has a shorter time delay fuse, causing the star to ignite at the same time as the lift charge at takeoff. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, 30 June 2022 The filthy Chicago River catches fire and the flames rise 50 feet to ignite the Kinzie Street Bridge. Chicago Tribune, 26 June 2022 Dry air at the low levels means much of the rain evaporates before hitting the ground, allowing some channels of electricity to potentially ignite new wildfires without any water to extinguish the flames. Matthew Cappucci, Washington Post, 23 June 2022 Schmidt created a wildfire hazard map for Anchorage that uses 2014 NASA aerial imagery data, showing which neighborhoods are most at risk for wildfire based on the kinds of vegetation in each area, and how embers might travel to ignite other fires. Tess Williams, Anchorage Daily News, 28 May 2022 How Dodgers’ Gavin Lux cleared mental hurdles to ignite his career. Los Angeles Times, 28 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ignite.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of ignite

1666, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2

History and Etymology for ignite

Latin ignitus, past participle of ignire to ignite, from ignis

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Dictionary Entries Near ignite

ignis fatuus



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Statistics for ignite

Last Updated

17 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Ignite.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ignite. Accessed 20 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for ignite


ig·​nite | \ ig-ˈnīt How to pronounce ignite (audio) \
ignited; igniting

Kids Definition of ignite

1 : to set on fire : light ignite newspaper
2 : to catch fire But the entire Oklahoma Panhandle is so dry, everything is … ready to ignite.— Karen Hesse, Out of the Dust

More from Merriam-Webster on ignite

Nglish: Translation of ignite for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ignite for Arabic Speakers


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