iron

noun
\ ˈī(-ə)rn How to pronounce iron (audio) \

Definition of iron

 (Entry 1 of 3)

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 in the fire
1 : a matter requiring close attention
2 : a prospective course of action

iron

adjective

Definition of iron (Entry 2 of 3)

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

iron

verb
ironed; ironing; irons

Definition of iron (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : 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

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Other Words from iron

Adjective

ironness \ ˈī(-​ə)rn-​nəs How to pronounce iron (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for iron

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of iron in a Sentence

Adjective he had an iron determination to succeed in on Wall Street
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But Australia's most lucrative export, iron ore, still has eager buyers among Chinese steel manufacturers. Rod Mcguirk, Star Tribune, "Australia plans big defense and security investments," 11 May 2021 What's happening: China's benchmark iron ore futures rallied an eye-popping 10% to a record high on Monday. Julia Horowitz, CNN, "Iron ore prices go ballistic as metals boom," 10 May 2021 From the rally of the commodities boom, a new upstart has emerged: iron ore. Fortune, "Dogecoin is now worth more than these corporate giants—even after this weekend’s epic collapse," 10 May 2021 Metals, mining, iron ore, coal and rare metals were higher while semiconductors were weak. Brendan Ahern, Forbes, "Metal Mania Drives Markets Higher, Weibo’s Q1 Beats," 10 May 2021 Rio Tinto blasted 46,000-year-old rock shelters at Juukan Gorge last May to expand an iron-ore mine, sparking condemnation from investors, politicians, its own staff and the wider community. Washington Post, "N.Y. settles with companies over fake-comment campaign opposing net neutrality," 6 May 2021 Dense forests in the area provided plenty of raw materials for furnaces and foundries smelting iron ore into stoves and lamp posts that could be shipped to Philadelphia. Kate Aronoff, The New Republic, "How an Oat Milk Pipeline in New Jersey Explains the Problem With Biden’s Climate Plan," 7 Apr. 2021 Most of the vessels waiting were bulk carriers — which transport unpackaged cargo such as grains, coal and iron ore — and container ships, according to Leth Agencies, which provides Suez Canal crossing services. BostonGlobe.com, "Suez Canal authorities say backlog of ships is now cleared," 4 Apr. 2021 The Port of Cleveland is finishing up an $11 million project at its bulk terminal that mixes two types of iron ore before sending it up the Cuyahoga River. cleveland, "Port of Cleveland completing project to serve Cleveland Cliffs steel mill," 30 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective 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, "Minnesota lawmakers propose ban and moratorium on copper mining," 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, "The 15 best things to buy on sale at Nordstrom right now," 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, "Nordstrom is having a huge sale on some of its top-rated brands ahead of the Anniversary Sale," 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, "Nordstrom is having a huge sale-on-sale and the deals are incredible," 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, "The Complicated Role of Iron in Ocean Health and Climate Change," 6 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The Lakers would prefer to iron all of this out on the practice court, allowing for Davis to try and get his legs while figuring out how to best function alongside new-ish center Andre Drummond. Dan Woike, Los Angeles Times, "Anthony Davis returns and plays well in Lakers’ loss to Mavericks," 22 Apr. 2021 Mayor Bill de Blasio should have stepped in and instructed the NYPD Commissioner to iron things out with the Inspector General and provide the requested records. Topher Sanders, ProPublica, "Inspecting the NYPD “Puzzle Palace”," 15 Apr. 2021 If the suede has been wrinkled in the process, don't iron! Sara Rodrigues, House Beautiful, "How to Clean Suede," 23 Feb. 2021 Pedroia identified some glitches in Dalbec’s swing, and the two worked to iron them out in the batting cage. Alex Speier, BostonGlobe.com, "Recalling Dustin Pedroia’s final game, and humble exit, on a Double A diamond in Portland," 2 Feb. 2021 But then her husband is easily maddened: While disposing of the household meat, his wife has forgotten to iron his white shirt. Bindu Bansinath, Bon Appétit, "After a Life-Changing Injury, I Had to Eat to Heal," 8 Dec. 2020 Many graves contained pottery; others featured a smattering of weapons, from a sword to iron spearheads and at least one shield. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, "This Anglo-Saxon Cemetery Is Filled With Corpses’ Ghostly Silhouettes," 18 Sep. 2020 My uniform—a blazer and slacks of ocean-blue polyester, with a patch depicting a sun rising over the pages of an open book sewn halfway up the right sleeve—was freshly ironed. Alex Halberstadt, The New Yorker, "October’s Child: The Year I Left the Soviet Union," 5 Apr. 2020 Talley was raised by a great-grandmother and grandmother who boiled the laundry and ironed the sheets. Rumaan Alam, The New Republic, "André Leon Talley Corrects the Record," 19 May 2020

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.

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First Known Use of iron

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

History and Etymology for iron

Noun

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

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Time Traveler for iron

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for iron

Last Updated

15 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Iron.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/iron. Accessed 15 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for iron

iron

noun

English Language Learners Definition of iron

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a heavy type of metal that is very common, occurs naturally in blood, and is used to make steel and in many products
: a device with a flat metal base that is heated and is used to press wrinkles out of clothing
: a golf club that has a metal head and is identified by a number

iron

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of iron (Entry 2 of 3)

: made of iron
: very strong

iron

verb

English Language Learners Definition of iron (Entry 3 of 3)

: to use a heated iron to make clothing or fabric smooth

iron

noun
\ ˈī-ərn How to pronounce iron (audio) \

Kids Definition of iron

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a heavy silvery white metallic chemical element that rusts easily, is strongly attracted by magnets, occurs in meteorites and combined in minerals, and is necessary for transporting oxygen in the blood
2 : a device that is heated and used for making cloth smooth
3 : a device that is heated to perform a task a soldering iron
4 irons plural : handcuffs or chains used to bind or to hinder movement

iron

adjective

Kids Definition of iron (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : made of iron
2 : strong and healthy He has an iron constitution.
3 : not giving in an iron will

iron

verb
ironed; ironing

Kids Definition of iron (Entry 3 of 3)

: to press with a heated iron

iron

noun
\ ˈī(-ə)rn How to pronounce iron (audio) \

Medical Definition of iron

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

Other Words from iron

iron adjective

Comments on iron

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