in·​fer·​no | \ in-ˈfər-(ˌ)nō How to pronounce inferno (audio) \
plural infernos

Definition of inferno

: a place or a state that resembles or suggests hell the inferno of war also : an intense fire : conflagration a raging inferno

Examples of inferno in a Sentence

By the time help arrived, the fire had grown to a raging inferno. the intense heat of the raging inferno repeatedly drove back the firefighters
Recent Examples on the Web Still, the brothers were relieved that no one was in the inferno that consumed not only their life’s work but their start in the restaurant industry. Vincent T. Davis, San Antonio Express-News, 18 Oct. 2021 At least 79 people have been declared or presumed dead after the June 14 inferno. Jessica Suerth, CNN, 11 Oct. 2021 This year, the inferno could exceed the Castle Fire's mortality rate. The Washington Post, Arkansas Online, 10 Oct. 2021 However, this year, the inferno could exceed the Castle Fire’s mortality rate. Washington Post, 9 Oct. 2021 Fire managers get an alert if the tech detects a potential inferno. Kevin T. Dugan, Fortune, 30 Sep. 2021 Though the city’s recovery was remarkable, relief efforts focused on getting people what the inferno had taken from them — no more, no less. Talia Soglin,, 29 Sep. 2021 Much to their disappointment, Michael emerges from the inferno to continue menacing Haddonfield, particularly his childhood home, which is currently being occupied by a Minnie and Moskowitz–loving gay couple (Michael McDonald and Scott MacArthur). Matthew Jacobs, Vulture, 18 Oct. 2021 Crews extinguished several vegetation spot fires that had sparked nearby and were continuing to focus efforts on attacking the main inferno, officials said. San Diego Union-Tribune, 16 Oct. 2021

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

1834, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for inferno

Italian, hell, from Late Latin infernus

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Time Traveler for inferno

Time Traveler

The first known use of inferno was in 1834

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Dictionary Entries Near inferno

infernal machine



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Statistics for inferno

Last Updated

25 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Inferno.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of inferno

: a very large and dangerous fire

More from Merriam-Webster on inferno

Nglish: Translation of inferno for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of inferno for Arabic Speakers


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