fume

noun
\ ˈfyüm How to pronounce fume (audio) \

Definition of fume

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a smoke, vapor, or gas especially when irritating or offensive engine exhaust fumes
b : an often noxious suspension of particles in a gas (such as air)
2 : something (such as an emotion) that impairs one's reasoning sometimes his head gets a little hot with the fumes of patriotism— Matthew Arnold
3 : a state of excited irritation or anger usually used in the phrase in a fume
on fumes
: with little of the original strength or energy remaining tired ballplayers running on fumes

fume

verb
fumed; fuming

Definition of fume (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to expose to or treat with fumes
2 : to give off in fumes fuming thick black smoke
3 : to utter while in a state of excited irritation or anger

intransitive verb

1a : to emit fumes
b : to be in a state of excited irritation or anger fretted and fumed over the delay
2 : to rise in or as if in fumes

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from fume

Noun

fumy \ ˈfyü-​mē How to pronounce fumy (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for fume

Synonyms: Verb

boil, burn, foam, rage, rankle, seethe, sizzle, steam, storm

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of fume in a Sentence

Verb

She's still fuming about not being invited to the party. We sat there waiting for him, fuming with anger at the delay. “They made these changes without even asking our opinion,” one employee fumed. The volcano was fuming thick black smoke.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Though their ranks shrunk, as emergency workers died of cancers and other diseases linked to the toxic fumes from the World Trade Center rubble, the fate of the funding had never been permanently guaranteed. Jonathan Lemire, Fortune, "Trump Signs Bill Extending 9/11 Victims’ Compensation," 29 July 2019 Russia’s Defense Ministry said the sailors were killed by toxic fumes from the fire. Fox News, "Scientists discover radiation leak '100,000 times normal level' from Russian nuclear sub wreck," 12 July 2019 The Defense Ministry said the 14 seamen were killed by toxic fumes from Monday’s blaze, the navy’s worst accident in more than a decade. Vladimir Isachenkov, BostonGlobe.com, "Russia: Nuclear reactor safe on fire-hit submersible," 4 July 2019 The Defense Ministry said the 14 seamen were killed by toxic fumes from Monday’s blaze, the navy’s worst accident in more than a decade. Time, "A Nuclear Reactor on Fire-Damaged Submarine Remains Safe and 'Operational,' Russian Authorities Say," 4 July 2019 Most women in low-income countries still cook using the three-stone stove, which gives off incredibly toxic fumes. Lauren Goode, WIRED, "Why Everything From Transit to iPhones Is Biased Toward Men," 2 July 2019 The reason that selling a home on a busy artery is problematic is that many buyers fear heavy traffic will translate to noise and fumes. Ellen James Martin, courant.com, "Selling a house that’s on a busy street," 10 July 2019 This can increase ventilation and carry away any potentially harmful fumes. Markham Heid, Time, "Are Paint Fumes a Health Concern? Here's What the Latest Science Says," 5 July 2019 Woodford County Emergency Management Director Drew Chandler said in a telephone interview the only thing left burning is ethanol fumes. chicagotribune.com, "Authorities fear Jim Beam bourbon fire’s booze-laden runoff will end up killing fish," 5 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Pastel-coloured vintage cars speed by, spewing exhaust fumes into the oppressive midday heat. Anastasia Miari, 1843, "Magic grannies are stopping Cuba going hungry," 7 Aug. 2019 Unsurprisingly after giving up seven total runs — six in the fourth inning — Sale was pulled from the game and was fuming. Michelle R. Martinelli, For The Win, "Alex Cora, Chris Sale flipped out at umpire and got ejected in Yankees game," 3 Aug. 2019 Even though things seemed okay between Lamont and Simon after that, fans watching at home were fuming over the whole exchange. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'AGT' Fans Are Super Upset With Judge Simon Cowell After His Tense Stand-Off With Lamont Landers," 26 June 2019 Environmentalists fume at his climate record in Parliament, including votes against carbon capture and storage technology investments and in favor of taxation on renewable energy projects. Nathanial Gronewold, Science | AAAS, "Boris Johnson’s stance on climate change has flip-flopped," 25 July 2019 But the announced support is still far short of the 218 needed to impeach the president and send charges to the Senate for a trial, and moderate Democrats from Republican-leaning districts have quietly fumed at the position they are being put in. Nicholas Fandos, New York Times, "Mueller Hearings on Wednesday Present Make-or-Break Moment for Democrats," 20 July 2019 Yankees fans spent much of the winter fuming at general manager Brian Cashman, lamenting his failure to sign either Manny Machado or Bryce Harper in free agency. Michael Shapiro, SI.com, "Forget Harper and Machado. Yankees Scored With Free-Agent Bet on DJ LeMahieu," 26 June 2019 Investors may fume at Mr Woodford for his racy choice of stocks. The Economist, "Neil Woodford, star fund-manager, comes a cropper," 6 June 2019 As Potocki fumed, Perry and Matthews discovered the batteries in the hammer drill that would drive in the weather station’s anchor bolts were dead from the cold. National Geographic, "Inside the Everest expedition that built the world’s highest weather station," 27 June 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of fume

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for fume

Noun

Middle English, "smoke, exhalation," borrowed from Anglo-French fum, going back to Latin fūmus "smoke, fumes," going back to Indo-European *dhuh2-mó- "smoke, vapor" (whence also Old Church Slavic dymŭ "smoke," Lithuanian dū́mai, Sanskrit dhūmáḥ, and probably Greek thȳmós "spirit, mind, courage"), noun derivative from a verbal base *dhu̯eh2- or *dheu̯h2- "produce smoke by burning," whence Greek thýō, thýein "to sacrifice," Latin suffiō, suffīre "to subject to smoke, fumigate," Old Church Slavic dujǫ, duti "to blow" and perhaps Tocharian B twās- "kindle, ignite"

Note: Also allied are Hittite tuhhae-, perhaps "to smoke out, drive out by smoke," from an unattested noun derivative (earlier glossed as "gasp, cough"; see A. Kloeckhorst, Etymological Dictionary of the Hittite Inherited Lexicon, Brill, 2008); and Old High German toum "vapor, smoke," Middle Dutch doom "vapor, steam," going back to Germanic *dauma-, presumably from an o-grade derivative *dhou̯h2-mo-. Greek thȳmós is an exact phonetic correspondent to the other words, though the sense divergence suggests influence from some phonetically similar base of different meaning.

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about fume

Statistics for fume

Last Updated

12 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fume

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for fume

fume

noun

English Language Learners Definition of fume

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: smoke or gas that smells unpleasant

fume

verb

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

: to show or feel anger
: to say (something) in an angry way
: to produce or give off (smoke, fumes, etc.)

fume

noun
\ ˈfyüm How to pronounce fume (audio) \

Kids Definition of fume

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a disagreeable smoke, vapor, or gas usually used in pl. noxious fumes

fume

verb
fumed; fuming

Kids Definition of fume (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to give off a disagreeable smoke, vapor, or gas
2 : to be angry
3 : to say something in an angry way “Don't ever ask me again,” I fumed.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on fume

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fume

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fume

Spanish Central: Translation of fume

Nglish: Translation of fume for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fume for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about fume

Comments on fume

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to move or obtain by small maneuvers

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Summer 2019 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a-bowl-of-peach-sorbet-with-cut-peaches-next-to-it
  • Which is a synonym of desideratum?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!