American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A silvery-white, lustrous, malleable, ductile, magnetic or magnetizable, metallic element occurring abundantly in combined forms, notably in hematite, limonite, magnetite, and taconite, and used alloyed in a wide range of important structural materials. Atomic number 26; atomic weight 55.845; melting point 1,535°C; boiling point 2,750°C; specific gravity 7.874 (at 20°C); valence 2, 3, 4, 6. See Table at element.
- n. An implement made of iron alloy or similar metal, especially a bar heated for use in branding, curling hair, or cauterizing.
- n. Great hardness or strength; firmness: a will of iron.
- n. Sports Any of a series of golf clubs having a bladelike metal head and numbered from one to nine in order of increasing loft.
- n. A metal appliance with a handle and a weighted flat bottom, used when heated to press wrinkles from fabric.
- n. A harpoon.
- n. Fetters; shackles.
- n. A tonic, pill, or other medication containing iron and taken as a dietary supplement.
- adj. Made of or containing iron: iron bars; an iron alloy.
- adj. Strong, healthy, and capable of great endurance: an iron constitution.
- adj. Inflexible; unyielding: iron resolve.
- adj. Holding tightly; very firm: has an iron grip.
- v. To press and smooth with a heated iron: iron clothes.
- v. To remove (creases) by pressing.
- v. To put into irons; fetter.
- v. To fit or clad with iron.
- v. To iron clothes.
- iron out To settle through discussion or compromise; work out.
- idiom. in irons Nautical Lying head to the wind and unable to turn either way.
- idiom. iron in the fire An undertaking or project in progress: has many irons in the fire this year.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Chemical symbol, Fe; atomic weight, 56. A metal, the most abundant and the most important of all those used in the metallic form. It was formerly thought that iron did not occur native, except as meteoric iron, but it has recently been found in large quantities in the basaltic lava of Greenland near Ovifak. This, however, is not chemically pure, nor is any iron manufactured from the ore in the large way free from impurities, and the substances thus present in manufactured iron are of great importance in reference to the character of the metal produced. Of all these impurities carbon is the most important, and its relations to iron are both complicated and difficult of explanation. Iron, as prepared by Percy, according to the method indicated by Berzelius, and believed to be as nearly chemically pure as possible, had a specific gravity of 7.8707 before being rolled. Iron deposited from solution by electrolysis, and believed to be pure, had a specific gravity ranging from 7.9405 to 8.107. Iron nearly chemically pure, as obtained by Berzelius, was described by him as being very nearly as white as silver, extremely tenacious, softer than ordinary bar-iron, and scaly in fracture. Iron is put upon the market in three forms, which differ essentially in their properties: cast-iron, which is hard, comparatively brittle, and readily fusible, and cannot be forged or welded;
- n. A utensil or weapon made of iron: often in combination with a noun or an adjective expressive of its purpose or character : as, a flat-iron, gridiron, or shooting-iron (slang for pistol).
- n. Specifically— A knife, sword, or other cutting implement.
- n. plural Fetters or other chains fastened to the person of a prisoner: as, a mutineer is put in irons.
- n. In whaling, a hand-harpoon; a toggle-iron, used in striking a whale. There are two forms, the first and second irons (which see, below).
- n. A brand-iron.
- n. To have, as a square-rigged vessel, the yards so braced that, some sails being full of wind and some aback, the vessel is temporarily unmanageable.
- Made of iron; consisting of iron: as, an iron gate; an iron bar.
- Resembling iron in some respect, either really or metaphorically.
- Hence— Harsh; rude; severe.
- Binding fast ; not to be broken.
- Capable of great endurance; firm; robust: as, an iron constitution.
- Not to be bent; inflexible.
- In mining, same as gossan. [U.S.]
- To shackle with irons; fetter; handcuff.
- To furnish, mount, or arm with iron: as, to iron a wagon.
- To smooth with an instrument of iron, especially with a hot flat-iron, smoothing-iron, or box-iron.
- n. uncountable A common, inexpensive metal, often black in color, that rusts, is attracted by magnets, and is used in making steel.
- n. uncountable, physics, chemistry, metallurgy A metallic chemical element having atomic number 26, and symbol Fe.
- n. uncountable, countable, metallurgy Any material, not a steel, predominantly made of elemental iron.
- n. countable A tool or appliance made of metal, which is heated and then used to transfer heat to something else; most often a thick piece of metal fitted with a handle and having a flat, roughly triangular bottom, which is heated and used to press wrinkles from clothing, and now usually containing an electrical heating apparatus.
- n. usually plural shackles.
- n. slang A handgun.
- n. uncountable A dark shade of the colour/color silver.
- n. Cockney rhyming slang, offensive A male homosexual.
- n. golf A golf club used for middle-distance shots.
- adj. not comparable Made of the metal iron.
- adj. figuratively Strong (as of will), inflexible.
- v. transitive To pass an iron over (clothing or some other item made of cloth) in order to remove creases.
- v. transitive, archaic To shackle with irons; to fetter or handcuff.
- v. transitive To furnish or arm with iron.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Chem.) The most common and most useful metallic element, being of almost universal occurrence, usually in the form of oxide (as hematite, magnetite, etc.), or a hydrous oxide (as limonite, turgite, etc.). It is reduced on an enormous scale in three principal forms; viz., cast iron, steel, and wrought iron. Iron usually appears dark brown, from oxidation or impurity, but when pure, or on a fresh surface, is a gray or white metal. It is easily oxidized (rusted) by moisture, and is attacked by many corrosive agents. Symbol Fe (Latin
Ferrum). Atomic number 26, atomic weight 55.847. Specific gravity, pure iron, 7.86; cast iron, 7.1. In magnetic properties, it is superior to all other substances.
- n. An instrument or utensil made of iron; -- chiefly in composition
- n. Fetters; chains; handcuffs; manacles.
- n. Strength; power; firmness; inflexibility.
- n. (Golf) An iron-headed club with a deep face, chiefly used in making approaches, lifting a ball over hazards, etc.
- adj. Of, or made of iron; consisting of iron.
- adj. Resembling iron in color.
- adj. Like iron in hardness, strength, impenetrability, power of endurance, insensibility, etc.
- adj. Rude; hard; harsh; severe.
- adj. Firm; robust; enduring.
- adj. Inflexible; unrelenting.
- adj. Not to be broken; holding or binding fast; tenacious.
- v. To smooth with an instrument of iron; especially, to smooth, as cloth, with a heated flatiron; -- sometimes used with out.
- v. To shackle with irons; to fetter or handcuff.
- v. To furnish or arm with iron.
- n. a golf club that has a relatively narrow metal head
- adj. extremely robust
- n. a heavy ductile magnetic metallic element; is silver-white in pure form but readily rusts; used in construction and tools and armament; plays a role in the transport of oxygen by the blood
- n. implement used to brand live stock
- n. home appliance consisting of a flat metal base that is heated and used to smooth cloth
- v. press and smooth with a heated iron
- Middle English iren, from Old English īren. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“With the rise of knowledge of scientific chemistry, it was quickly found that the essential difference between iron and steel was that the latter was _iron plus carbon_.”
“The iron keeps all that it gets; we, and other animals, part with it again; but the metal absolutely keeps what it has once received of this aerial gift; and the ochreous dust which we so much despise is, in fact, just so much nobler than pure iron, in so far as it is _iron and the air.”
“Then I asked him if any piece of iron would attract, after it was rubbed upon the magnet; and he said that _iron_ would not, but that any piece of _steel_ would.”
“The crystals which we obtained from the combination of iron and sulphuric acid were therefore _sulphat of iron_?”
“This place is also noted for making what is absurdly called _copperas_, which is the chrystalized salt of iron, or what is called in the new chemical nomenclature _sulphate of iron_; or in common parlance, _green vitriol_; which is manufactured, and found native in our own country, in immeasurable quantity.”
A Journal of a Young Man of Massachusetts, 2nd ed. Late A Surgeon On Board An American Privateer, Who Was Captured At Sea By The British, In May, Eighteen Hundred And Thirteen, And Was Confined First, At Melville Island, Halifax, Then At Chatham, In England ... And Last, At Dartmoor Prison. Interspersed With Observations, Anecdotes And Remarks, Tending To Illustrate The Moral And Political Characters Of Three Nations. To Which Is Added, A Correct Engraving Of Dartmoor Prison, Representing The Massacre Of American Prisoners, Written By Himself.
“(i.e. iron) _shirts of mail_, 334. græg-mæl, adj., _having a gray color_, here = _iron_: nom.sg. sweord”
“(i.e. iron) _shirts of mail_, 334. grǣg-mǣl, adj., _having a gray color_, here = _iron_: nom.sg. sweord”
“My choice of shootin iron is - A Savage 24 in .22 over .410.”
“The first recorded use of the term iron curtain was derived from the safety curtain used in theatres and first applied to the border of communist Russia as "an impenetrable barrier" in 1920 by Ethel Snowden, in her book Through Bolshevik Russia”
“Van de Venter said the term iron age defined groups of people who used iron implements for agricultural purposes and these groups of people only started moving into southern Africa about 2000 years ago.”
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