from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A performer who pretends to swallow fire.
  • n. A belligerent person or a militant partisan.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A performer who pretends to swallow fire.
  • n. A quarrelsome or belligerent person.
  • n. An extreme partisan for the South before the US Civil War.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A juggler who pretends to eat fire.
  • n. A person of recklessly defiant disposition, especially a persistent duelist; specifically, in the United States, before the civil war, a violent and bitter Southern partizan.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a member of a fire department who tries to extinguish fires
  • n. a performer who pretends to swallow fire
  • n. a belligerent grouch


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • I guess tomorrow night I'll pretend to be a snake charmer or a fire-eater, maybe the girl who rides the ponies backwards.


  • An amazing, inspiring and amusing man of 53 who had begun performing as a teenage accordianist, fire-eater and stilt-walker in a Quebec park in 1983, joined with some twenty acrobatic friends to create a unique assemblage of street artists who first came to Los Angeles next year for a show, not even knowing if they had the fare to return home.

    Jay Weston: Cirque du Soleil's Ovo Drove Me Buggy... In a Nice Way

  • Not at all the fire-eater he has turned out to be lately.

    "Power" by Harl Vincent, part 7

  • The red sauce is very hot, so use less if your tongue is tender, more if you are a fire-eater.

    One Big Table

  • The "gallant failure" had been the biggest botch since the Kabul Retreat, thanks to the idiot Maximilian, who was damned if he'd be rescued, so there, and I'd come off by the skin of my chattering teeth and the good offices of that gorgeous little fire-eater, Princess Aggie Salm-Salm, and Jesus Montero's gang of unwashed bandits who were on hand only because Jesus thought I knew where Montezuma's treasure was cached, more fool he.


  • China had given him the misguided notion that I was the devil's own fire-eater, and just the chap to have on hand when Fuzzy charged the square.


  • Less iconographically complex, though more symbolically resonant are her more recent large paintings of a female fire-eater in harlequin costume.

    Artists: Contemporary Anglo.

  • Laliberte, an experienced fire-eater and stilt-walker who founded Cirque du Soleil, joined Russian cosmonaut Maxim Surayev and American astronaut Jeffrey Williams aboard a Soyuz craft that soared off the Kazakh steppe and set a course for the International Space Station.

    Peter Diamandis: Gold Rush on the Moon

  • There are many moderate Republicans in Pennsylvania, probably not enough for Specter to have won his primary next year against fire-eater Pat Toomey of the Club for Growth, but certainly enough to have had a chance of victory and to have made a decent showing.

    Bruce Ledewitz: Arlen Specter: The Pennsylvania Perspective

  • A double-jointed contortionist, skeletally thin and able to dislocate his bones at will, tied his body in knots, eliciting loud oohs and aahs from an appreciative crowd; a juggler vied with a fire-eater for the attention of fashionable ladies and gentleman, whose powdered faces, studded with black beauty spots, glowed a ghostly white in the flickering half-light.



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