iron

1 of 3

noun

1
: a silver-white malleable ductile magnetic heavy metallic element that readily rusts in moist air, occurs in pure form in meteorites and combined in most igneous rocks, is the most abundant element on Earth by mass, and is vital to biological processes see Chemical Elements Table
2
: something made of iron: such as
a
: a household device usually with a flat metal base that is heated to smooth, finish, or press (such as cloth)
b
: any of a series of numbered golf clubs having relatively thin metal heads compare wood
c
irons plural : shackles for the hands or legs
d
: a heated metal implement used for branding or cauterizing
e
: stirrup
usually used in plural
3
: great strength, hardness, or determination

iron

2 of 3

adjective

1
: of, relating to, or made of iron
2
: resembling iron
3
a
: strong and healthy : robust
an iron constitution
b
: inflexible, unrelenting
iron determination
c
: holding or binding fast
an iron grip
ironness noun

iron

3 of 3

verb

ironed; ironing; irons

transitive verb

1
a
: to smooth with or as if with a heated iron
iron a shirt
b
: to remove (something, such as wrinkles) by ironing
2
: to shackle with irons
3
: to furnish or cover with iron

intransitive verb

: to smooth or press cloth or clothing with a heated iron
Phrases
iron in the fire
1
: a matter requiring close attention
2
: a prospective course of action

Example Sentences

Adjective he had an iron determination to succeed in on Wall Street
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
In 1902, the vessel was transporting a load of iron ore with another steamer, the Maunaloa, in tow, when a storm struck, according to the historical society. Miriam Marini, USA TODAY, 13 Oct. 2022 In 1902, the vessel was transporting a load of iron ore with another steamer, the Maunaloa, in tow, when a storm struck, according to the historical society. Miriam Marini, Detroit Free Press, 13 Oct. 2022 The Australian mining giant Fortescue Metals Group is leaving carbon capture out of its pioneering plan to eliminate emissions from its iron ore business by 2030, focusing instead on powering operations entirely on renewable energy. Evan Halper, Washington Post, 9 Oct. 2022 The global price of iron ore is almost back to pre-pandemic levels. George Calhoun, Forbes, 3 Oct. 2022 In them, Andrea's dress can be seen stained with the iron ore carried in the open-top rail wagons. Yasmeen E. Awaja, CNN, 30 Sep. 2022 Brazil exports massive amounts of agricultural products and raw commodities, including iron ore and oil, to China. Charles Couger, Fox News, 22 Sep. 2022 The ship will carry salt from Cleveland across the Great Lakes and bring iron ore back, along with other raw materials like stone and aggregate. Sean Mcdonnell, cleveland, 31 Aug. 2022 Despite bad diplomatic relations, Australia’s sales of iron ore, a main raw material for China’s industry, gained last year. New York Times, 3 Aug. 2022
Adjective
Its Stretch Regent, coming in various fits and specs, is a modern shirt at its finest, treated with non-iron stretch fabric, wrinkle resistance, and a classic French cuff. Christian Gollayan, Men's Health, 7 Nov. 2022 For my anti-iron lifestyle, the Nori is a clear winner. Rachel Besser, Vogue, 20 Aug. 2021 The broad bill is a moratorium of sorts and covers any kind of hard rock, or non-iron ore, mine anywhere in Minnesota. Jennifer Bjorhus, Star Tribune, 13 Jan. 2021 Efforts to slow copper-mining's advance into Minnesota are intensifying, with state lawmakers backing a prohibitive measure that would require mining companies to show proof that a similar non-iron, hard rock mine has operated safely elsewhere. Jennifer Bjorhus, Star Tribune, 13 Jan. 2021 For men who need to look sharp on a budget, these Nordstrom athletic-fit non-iron chinos are just the ticket. Nicole Briese, USA TODAY, 13 Dec. 2020 Check out this Nordstrom trim-fit non-iron dress shirt, which drops from $39.50 to $19.75 in the Red Ruby hue. Arielle Tschinkel, USA TODAY, 29 July 2020 Check out this Nordstrom traditional fit non-iron dress shirt, which drops a full 70% in select colors and sizing from $49.50 to $14.85. Nicole Briese, USA TODAY, 10 July 2020 In ancient seas, iron aplenty To learn how iron fertilization might work in the future, some researchers are looking at the past, in paleoclimate records such as ice cores and deep-sea sediments. Emily Underwood, Smithsonian Magazine, 6 Jan. 2020
Verb
She’s someone who takes in strangers in need in the community to clean and iron their clothes and feed them meals. John Blake, CNN, 8 Oct. 2022 There’s time to iron things out, of course, but when the standard is competing for national championships, the rumbles and grumbles following a close call are inevitable. Eddie Timanus, USA TODAY, 4 Oct. 2022 Using ironing cloths and a few leaves leftover from raking your yard, iron the leaves onto 8x8 squares of wax paper. Savanna Bous, Better Homes & Gardens, 12 Sep. 2022 Working tip to tail, iron the wax onto the ski using short, back-and-forth strokes down the ski. Ben Fox, Outside Online, 20 Feb. 2019 Best Large Laundry Hamper Sort, fold and iron clean clothes and linens on this spacious laundry hamper and ironing board combo. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, 25 July 2022 Meanwhile, the pandemic continues to fade, allowing global supply chains to iron themselves out, which will ease shortages for everything from lumber to vehicles. Mark Zandi For Cnn Business Perspectives, CNN, 20 July 2022 The Rowenta Smart Temp Steam Iron is designed to iron all fabrics at optimal heat, without any temperature dials. Carolyn Forté, Good Housekeeping, 8 July 2022 Morikawa, who also tied for fifth, said TCC required more navigation than most courses, especially when considering driver, wood, or iron off the tee. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 20 June 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English, from Old English īsern, īren; akin to Old High German īsarn iron

First Known Use

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 3

Time Traveler
The first known use of iron was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near iron

Cite this Entry

“Iron.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/iron. Accessed 4 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

iron 1 of 3

noun

1
: a heavy magnetic silver-white metallic element that quickly rusts in moist air, occurs in meteorites and rocks, and is widely used see element
2
: something made of iron: as
a
plural : handcuffs or chains used to bind or hinder movement
b
: a heated metal tool used for branding
c
: a household device with a flat metal base that is heated to smooth or press cloth
3
: strength sense 1, hardness
muscles of iron

iron

2 of 3

adjective

1
: of, relating to, or made of iron
2
: resembling iron
3
: being strong and healthy : robust
an iron constitution
4
: inflexible sense 3, unrelenting
iron determination

iron

3 of 3

verb

: to smooth or press clothes with a heated iron
iron a shirt
ironer noun

Medical Definition

1
: a heavy malleable ductile magnetic silver-white metallic element that readily rusts in moist air, occurs native in meteorites and combined in most igneous rocks, is the most used of metals, and is vital to biological processes (as in transport of oxygen in the body)
symbol Fe
see Chemical Elements Table
2
: iron chemically combined
iron in the blood
iron adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on iron

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