\ ˈsmōk How to pronounce smoke (audio) \

Definition of smoke

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the gaseous products of burning materials especially of organic origin made visible by the presence of small particles of carbon
b : a suspension of particles in a gas
2a : a mass or column of smoke
b : smudge
3 : fume or vapor often resulting from the action of heat on moisture
4 : something of little substance, permanence, or value
5 : something that obscures
6a(1) : something (such as a cigarette) to smoke
b : an act of smoking tobacco especially : a smoking break
7a : a pale blue
b : any of the colors of smoke
8 : pitches that are fastballs if a guy's going to hit you … he certainly isn't going to throw a spitter—he gives you smoke— Tony Conigliaro


smoked; smoking; smokes

Definition of smoke (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to emit or exhale smoke
b : to emit excessive smoke
2 archaic : to undergo punishment : suffer
3 : to spread or rise like smoke
4 : to inhale and exhale the fumes of burning plant material and especially tobacco especially : to smoke tobacco habitually

transitive verb

1a : fumigate
b : to drive (something, such as mosquitoes) away by smoke
c : to blacken or discolor with smoke smoked glasses
d : to cure or flavor by exposure to smoke smoked ham They smoked a rack of ribs. … offers, among other things, a flavorful sirloin steak and barbecued smoked chicken.— Andy Birsh
e : to stupefy (insects, such as bees) by smoke
2 archaic : suspect
3 : to inhale and exhale the smoke of smoke a cigarette
4 archaic : ridicule
5 slang : kill sense 1a
6 slang : to defeat or surpass decisively
7 : to hit (something, such as a baseball) with great force

Other Words from smoke


smokeless \ ˈsmō-​kləs How to pronounce smoke (audio) \ adjective
smokelike \ ˈsmōk-​ˌlīk How to pronounce smoke (audio) \ adjective

Examples of smoke in a Sentence

Noun Smoke from the campfire stung my eyes. We could see black smoke from the house fire. Can I bum a few smokes off you? Verb I caught her smoking a cigarette. He was thrown out of school for smoking marijuana. She smokes and drinks, but I don't. Do you mind if I smoke in here? That old car smokes when you start it up. the smoking remains of a fire We smoke our hams over hickory. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The smoke is coming from fires in Southwest Alaska, including a historic tundra wildfire that’s threatened multiple villages, KYUK reported this week. Morgan Krakow, Anchorage Daily News, 14 June 2022 There was one person who suffered from smoke inhalation during the fire. Mike Mavredakis, Hartford Courant, 14 June 2022 Firefighters arrived to find smoke coming from one of the units and forced open the door. Lyndsay Winkley, San Diego Union-Tribune, 9 June 2022 Your Echo device will listen for glass breaking, smoke alarms, or carbon monoxide alarms. Kim Komando, USA TODAY, 9 June 2022 The officer then saw smoke coming from the business. Angela Cordoba Perez, The Arizona Republic, 2 June 2022 Mansfield Fire Chief Justin Desrosiers said a police officer who was helping with the evacuations was taken to the hospital for treatment of smoke inhalation and has since been released. Globe Staff,, 1 June 2022 Ten died of smoke inhalation: Lancey Mateo, 1, Alejandrina Roblero, 29, Yadira Verdugo, 6, Leyver Verdugo, 10, William Verdugo, 8, Rosalia Camargo, 6, Jesus Camargo, 4, Jose Camargo, 4, Olga Leon, 24, and Rosalia Ruiz, 21. Matthew Ormsethstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 1 June 2022 After smoke alarms went off in the building, tenants rushed out of their apartments, Walker said, banging on their neighbors’ doors to make sure everyone knew to get out. Kolbie Peterson, The Salt Lake Tribune, 30 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Adults drink, sometimes to excess, and smoke cigars. Common Sense Media, Washington Post, 17 June 2022 Cool-touch side bars will keep your fingers safe during operation, but be aware that the unit may smoke a little upon first use. Camryn Rabideau, Popular Mechanics, 16 June 2022 The dedicated party deck includes a DJ booth, AV system, smoke machine and a light show. Jen Juneau,, 14 June 2022 By the time Kim pulled up, firefighters had put out the flames and saved the building as a whole, but not before much of Big Al’s had burned and smoke spread throughout the other businesses in the building. Gavin Good, Chicago Tribune, 14 June 2022 There’s nothing to do there but play golf, smoke cigars, drink bourbon and rock on rocking chairs. Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, 14 June 2022 Tyler Dixon, left, of Abbotsford, and Kim Baptiste, of Bella Bella, smoke fentanyl along East Hastings Street in the Downtown Eastside neighborhood of Vancouver, Canada. Los Angeles Times, 18 May 2022 The flare, a mixture of flames and smoke that pours out when the facility burns natural gas, had been burning non-stop for a week, Allaire said. Cathy Bussewitz And Martha Irvine, Chron, 2 June 2022 Camp stoves, under select circumstances, are a wonderful alternative for keeping flames and smoke to a minimum. J.d. Simkins, Sunset Magazine, 2 June 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of smoke


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


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

History and Etymology for smoke


Middle English, from Old English smoca; akin to Old English smēocan to emit smoke, Middle High German smouch smoke, and probably to Greek smychein to smolder

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Time Traveler for smoke

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

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Dictionary Entries Near smoke



smoke and mirrors

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Last Updated

18 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Smoke.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for smoke


\ ˈsmōk How to pronounce smoke (audio) \

Kids Definition of smoke

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the gas given off by burning materials (as coal, wood, or tobacco) made visible by particles of carbon floating in it
2 : the act of drawing in and blowing out the fumes of burning tobacco


smoked; smoking

Kids Definition of smoke (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to give out smoke The fire was still smoking.
2 : to draw in and blow out the fumes of burning tobacco (as in a cigarette)
3 : to expose (as meat) to the fumes of burning materials to give flavor and keep from spoiling

Other Words from smoke

smoker noun


\ ˈsmōk How to pronounce smoke (audio) \
smoked; smoking

Medical Definition of smoke

intransitive verb

: to inhale and exhale the fumes of burning plant material and especially tobacco especially : to smoke tobacco habitually

transitive verb

: to inhale and exhale the smoke of smoked 30 cigarettes a day

More from Merriam-Webster on smoke

Nglish: Translation of smoke for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of smoke for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about smoke


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