light a fire under (someone)

Definition of light a fire under (someone)

US, informal

  1. :  to cause (someone) to move or work more quickly and effectively I've never seen him work so hard. Someone must have lit a fire under him.

Word by Word Definitions

lightplay
  1. :  something that makes vision possible

    :  the sensation aroused by stimulation of the visual receptors

    :  electromagnetic radiation of any wavelength that travels in a vacuum with a speed of 299,792,458 meters (about 186,000 miles) per second

  1. :  having light :  bright

    :  not dark, intense, or swarthy in color or coloring :  pale

    :  medium in saturation and high in lightness

  1. :  to become light :  brighten

    :  to take fire

    :  to set fire to

  1. :  having little weight :  not heavy

    :  designed to carry a comparatively small load

    :  having relatively little weight in proportion to bulk

  1. :  lightly

    :  with little baggage

  1. :  dismount

    :  settle, alight

    :  to arrive by chance :  happen

fireplay
  1. :  the phenomenon of combustion manifested in light, flame, and heat

    :  one of the four elements of the alchemists

    :  burning passion :  ardor

  1. :  to set on fire :  kindle

    :  ignite

    :  to give life or spirit to :  inspire

underplay
  1. :  in or into a position below or beneath something

    :  below or short of some quantity, level, or limit

    :  in or into a condition of subjection, subordination, or unconsciousness

  1. :  below or beneath so as to be overhung, surmounted, covered, protected, or concealed by

    :  subject to the authority, control, guidance, or instruction of

    :  receiving or undergoing the action or effect of

  1. :  lower in rank or authority :  subordinate

someoneplay
  1. :  some person :  somebody


Seen and Heard

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