in·​cin·​er·​ate | \ in-ˈsi-nə-ˌrāt How to pronounce incinerate (audio) \
incinerated; incinerating

Definition of incinerate

transitive verb

: to cause to burn to ashes

Other Words from incinerate

incineration \ in-​ˌsi-​nə-​ˈrā-​shən How to pronounce incinerate (audio) \ noun

Examples of incinerate in a Sentence

The waste is incinerated in a large furnace.
Recent Examples on the Web While some less toxic materials were thrown into the fires, the burn pits were also used to incinerate chemicals, hazardous materials and weaponry. Anna Kaufman, USA TODAY, 3 Aug. 2022 The ingrained fears—that kilotons of destructive energy and toxic radiation could decimate a city and incinerate tens of thousands of human beings—began to dissipate. Robin Wright, The New Yorker, 23 Apr. 2022 To help promote the initiative, Atwood agreed to be filmed attempting — unsuccessfully — to incinerate a prototype with a flamethrower. Edward Segarra, USA TODAY, 9 June 2022 But the book doesn’t incinerate when the fire hits the cover — instead, the flames graze the edges, floating away with no wreckage left behind. Jaclyn Peiser, Washington Post, 24 May 2022 The burn that can come from that really can incinerate your whole thinking life and your daily processes. Rania Aniftos, Billboard, 17 May 2022 Nevermind that Chief Jim Hopper destroyed the most recent gate to the Upside Down, an event that caused an energy wave to literally incinerate everyone around him. Josh St. Clair, Men's Health, 27 May 2022 And lastly, your very presence in the desert or woods indicated that this was a precious place, one worth preserving, not a place for corporations to incinerate toxic waste or for citizens to dump mattresses and refrigerators. Outside Online, 3 June 2021 The biorefinery will not incinerate or combust municipal solid waste, official said. Carrie Napoleon, Chicago Tribune, 29 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of incinerate

1555, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for incinerate

Medieval Latin incineratus, past participle of incinerare, from Latin in- + ciner-, cinis ashes; akin to Greek konis dust, ashes

Learn More About incinerate

Time Traveler for incinerate

Time Traveler

The first known use of incinerate was in 1555

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near incinerate




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for incinerate

Last Updated

12 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Incinerate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for incinerate


in·​cin·​er·​ate | \ in-ˈsi-nə-ˌrāt How to pronounce incinerate (audio) \
incinerated; incinerating

Kids Definition of incinerate

: to burn to ashes


transitive verb
in·​cin·​er·​ate | \ in-ˈsin-ə-ˌrāt How to pronounce incinerate (audio) \
incinerated; incinerating

Medical Definition of incinerate

: to cause to burn to ashes


Test Your Vocabulary

Odd Habits and Quirks

  • image1926873504
  • Which of the following best describes an easily irritated person?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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