If you gather kindling and logs and burn them, then you've made a fire. For safety, you should make your fire in a fire pit or fireplace, but for fun, you can toast marshmallows over the fire.

As a verb, fire can mean to discharge a weapon. Your hometown might fire a cannon on the common each year to celebrate the Fourth of July. Rather than use a real cannonball, they probably fire it with blanks. The verb fire can also mean to terminate from a position of employment. It's no fun to have to fire someone, especially the guy you fire is your brother.

Primary Meanings of fire

the process of combustion of inflammable materials producing heat and light and (often) smoke
bake in a kiln so as to harden
the act of firing weapons or artillery at an enemy
cause to go off
a severe trial
intense adverse criticism
feelings of great warmth and intensity
call forth (emotions, feelings, and responses)
terminate the employment of; discharge from an office or position
Full Definitions of fire

n the process of combustion of inflammable materials producing heat and light and (often) smoke

fire was one of our ancestors' first discoveries”
flame, flaming
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blaze, blazing
a strong flame that burns brightly
a sudden burst of flame
the process of initiating combustion or catching fire
spontaneous combustion
ignition of a substance (as oily rags) resulting from an internal oxidation process
Type of:
burning, combustion
a process in which a substance reacts with oxygen to give heat and light

n once thought to be one of four elements composing the universe (Empedocles)

Type of:
one of four substances thought in ancient and medieval cosmology to constitute the physical universe

n the event of something burning (often destructive)

“they lost everything in the fire
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a fire that is set intentionally in order to slow an approaching forest fire or grassfire by clearing a burned area in its path
balefire, bonfire
a large outdoor fire that is lighted as a signal or in celebration
brush fire
an uncontrolled fire that consumes brush and shrubs and bushes
a small outdoor fire for warmth or cooking (as at a camp)
conflagration, inferno
a very intense and uncontrolled fire
forest fire
an uncontrolled fire in a wooded area
grassfire, prairie fire
an uncontrolled fire in a grassy area
smolder, smoulder
a fire that burns with thick smoke but no flame
a smoky fire to drive away insects
crown fire
a forest fire that advances with great speed jumping from crown to crown ahead of the ground fire
ground fire
a forest fire that burns the humus; may not appear on the surface
surface fire
a forest fire that burns only the surface litter and undergrowth
a raging and rapidly spreading conflagration
Type of:
happening, natural event, occurrence, occurrent
an event that happens

n fuel that is burning and is used as a means for cooking

“put the kettle on the fire
“barbecue over an open fire
Type of:
a substance that can be consumed to produce energy

n a fireplace in which a relatively small fire is burning

“they sat by the fire and talked”
a fire for cooking
Type of:
fireplace, hearth, open fireplace
an open recess in a wall at the base of a chimney where a fire can be built

v bake in a kiln so as to harden

fire pottery”
Type of:
cook and make edible by putting in a hot oven

v provide with fuel

“Oil fires the furnace”
Type of:
furnish, provide, render, supply
give something useful or necessary to

v destroy by fire

burn, burn down
burn, combust
undergo combustion
burn, incinerate
cause to undergo combustion
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set a controlled fire to halt an advancing forest or prairie fire
reduce to ashes
burn maliciously, as by arson
destroy completely by or as if by fire
Type of:
destroy, ruin
destroy completely; damage irreparably

n the act of firing weapons or artillery at an enemy

“hold your fire until you can see the whites of their eyes”
“they retreated in the face of withering enemy fire
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antiaircraft fire
firing at enemy aircraft
barrage, barrage fire, battery, bombardment, shelling
the heavy fire of artillery to saturate an area rather than hit a specific target
the simultaneous firing of all the armament on one side of a warship
burst, fusillade, salvo, volley
rapid simultaneous discharge of firearms
call fire
fire delivered on a specific target in response to a request from the supported unit
cover, covering fire
fire that makes it difficult for the enemy to fire on your own individuals or formations
concentrated fire, massed fire
fire from two or more weapons directed at a single target or area (as fire by batteries of two or more warships)
fire intended to neutralize or destroy enemy weapons
counterpreparation fire
intensive prearranged fire delivered when the immanence of enemy attack is discovered
fire from two or more points so that the lines of fire cross
destruction fire
fire delivered for the sole purpose of destroying material objects
direct fire
fire delivered on a target that is visible to the person aiming it
distributed fire
fire dispersed so as to engage effectively an area target
fratricide, friendly fire
fire that injures or kills an ally
hostile fire
fire that injures or kills an enemy
grazing fire
fire approximately parallel to the ground; the center of the cone of fire does rise above 1 meter from the ground
harassing fire
fire designed to disturb the rest of enemy troops and to curtail movement and to lower enemy morale
indirect fire
fire delivered on a target that is not itself used as the point of aim for the weapons
interdiction fire
fire directed to an area to prevent the enemy from using that area
neutralization fire
fire that is delivered in order to render the target ineffective or unusable
observed fire
fire for which the point of impact (the burst) can be seen by an observer; fire can be adjusted on the basis of the observations
preparation fire
fire delivered on a target in preparation for an assault
radar fire
gunfire aimed a target that is being tracked by radar
registration fire
fire delivered to obtain accurate data for subsequent effective engagement of targets
scheduled fire
prearranged fire delivered at a predetermined time
searching fire
fire distributed in depth by successive changes in the elevation of the gun
supporting fire
fire delivered by supporting units to protect or assist a unit in combat
suppressive fire
fire on or about a weapon system to degrade its performance below what is needed to fulfill its mission objectives
unobserved fire
fire for which the point of impact (the bursts) cannot be observed
artillery fire, cannon fire
fire delivered by artillery
close supporting fire
fire on enemy troops or weapons or positions that are near the supported unit and are the most immediate and serious threat to it
deep supporting fire
fire on objectives not in the immediate vicinity of your forces but with the objective of destroying enemy reserves and weapons and interfering with the enemy command and supply and communications
direct supporting fire
fire delivered in support of part of a force (as opposed to general supporting fire delivered in support of the force as a whole)
counterbattery fire
fire delivered to neutralize or destroy indirect fire weapon systems
bombardment intended to destroy or neutralize enemy weapons
countermortar fire
mortar fire intended to destroy or neutralize enemy weapons
cannonade, drumfire
intense and continuous artillery fire
high-angle fire
fire from a cannon that is fired at an elevation greater than that for the maximum range
mortar fire
artillery fire delivered by a mortar
zone fire
artillery or mortar fire delivered in a constant direction at several quadrant elevations
Type of:
attack, onrush, onset, onslaught
(military) an offensive against an enemy (using weapons)

v cause to go off

fire a gun”
fire a bullet”
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fire a weapon with a loud explosive noise
let drive, let fly, loose off
fire as from a gun
blast, shoot
fire a shot
attack with fusillade
blaze, blaze away
shoot rapidly and repeatedly
shoot beyond or over (a target)
sharpshoot, snipe
aim and shoot with great precision
open fire
start firing a weapon
shoot with a gun
deliver forth

v start firing a weapon

open fire
Type of:
blast, shoot
fire a shot

v go off or discharge

“The gun fired
discharge, go off

n a severe trial

“he went through fire and damnation”
Type of:
trial, tribulation, visitation
an annoying or frustrating or catastrophic event

n intense adverse criticism

“Clinton directed his fire at the Republican Party”
attack, blast, flack, flak
Type of:
criticism, unfavorable judgment
disapproval expressed by pointing out faults or shortcomings

n feelings of great warmth and intensity

ardor, ardour, fervency, fervidness, fervor, fervour
excessive fervor to do something or accomplish some end
Type of:
passion, passionateness
a strong feeling or emotion

v call forth (emotions, feelings, and responses)

arouse, elicit, enkindle, evoke, kindle, pique, provoke, raise
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strike a chord, touch a chord
evoke a reaction, response, or emotion
ask for, invite
increase the likelihood of
elicit responses, such as objections, criticism, applause, etc.
arouse again
arouse unreasoning love or passion in and cause to behave in an irrational way
cause a sharp emotional pain
fire up, heat, ignite, inflame, stir up, wake
arouse or excite feelings and passions
excite, shake, shake up, stimulate, stir
stir the feelings, emotions, or peace of
arouse or elicit a feeling
make angry
discomfit, discompose, disconcert, rattle, untune, upset
cause to lose one's composure
cause to be ashamed
bruise, hurt, injure, offend, spite, wound
hurt the feelings of
overcome, overpower, overtake, overwhelm, sweep over, whelm
overcome, as with emotions or perceptual stimuli
excite the curiosity of; engage the interest of
overwhelm or overpower
absorb, engage, engross, occupy
consume all of one's attention or time
clutch, get hold of, seize
affront, diss, insult
treat, mention, or speak to rudely
work up into agitation or excitement
arouse, excite, sex, turn on, wind up
stimulate sexually
affright, fright, frighten, scare
cause fear in
enervate, faze, unnerve, unsettle
disturb the composure of
cause to lose control emotionally
cause to become violent or angry
cause to be annoyed
gall, irk
irritate or vex
exasperate, incense, infuriate
make furious
make mad
offend, pique
cause to feel resentment or indignation
bemuse, bewilder, discombobulate, throw
cause to be confused emotionally
abash, embarrass
cause to be embarrassed; cause to feel self-conscious
look with disfavor on
anguish, hurt, pain
cause emotional anguish or make miserable
deeply hurt the feelings of; distress
cause an emotional pain, as if by stinging
put into a rage; make violently angry
thrill, tickle, vibrate
feel sudden intense sensation or emotion
cause great unhappiness for; distress
abase, chagrin, humble, humiliate, mortify
cause to feel shame; hurt the pride of
invite, tempt
give rise to a desire by being attractive or inviting
overwhelm with hilarity, pleasure, or admiration
overtake with darkness or night
knock out
overwhelm with admiration
astound or overwhelm, as with shock
hold fast (in a certain state)
elate, intoxicate, lift up, pick up, uplift
fill with high spirits; fill with optimism
animate, enliven, exalt, inspire, invigorate
heighten or intensify
excite pleasurably or erotically
aggravate, exacerbate, exasperate
exasperate or irritate
fascinate, grip, spellbind, transfix
render motionless, as with a fixed stare or by arousing terror or awe
cause to feel enthusiasm
Type of:
create, make
make or cause to be or to become

v drive out or away by or as if by fire

“The soldiers were fired
“Surrender fires the cold skepticism”
Type of:
chase away, dispel, drive away, drive off, drive out, run off, turn back
force to go away; used both with concrete and metaphoric meanings

v terminate the employment of; discharge from an office or position

“The boss fired his secretary today”
can, dismiss, displace, force out, give notice, give the axe, give the sack, sack, send away, terminate
employ, engage, hire
engage or hire for work
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make (someone) retire
pension off
let go from employment with an attractive pension
clean out
force out
furlough, lay off
dismiss, usually for economic reasons
squeeze out
force out
dismiss, drop, send away, send packing
stop associating with
retire and pension (someone) because of age or physical inability
dismiss from work
Type of:
remove from a position or an office

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