Try Our Apps


What is the origin of "February"?

fire ship

a vessel loaded with combustibles and explosives, ignited, and set adrift to destroy an enemy's ships or constructions.
Origin of fire ship
1580-90 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for fire-ship
Historical Examples
  • While they were endeavouring to get up the harbour, a fire-ship was seen descending directly for the “Torbay.”

    John Deane of Nottingham W.H.G. Kingston
  • A vessel filled with combustibles, but rather for explosion than as a fire-ship.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • On the other hand, the ships of his own division do not lose sight of the fire-ship.

  • There could be no doubt that her intention must be to run aboard the Orpheus, and that she must be a fire-ship.

    Hurricane Hurry W.H.G. Kingston
  • The first thing I said, as soon as I could speak, was “Damn that fire-ship, and the lubber that set her on fire.”

    Frank Mildmay Captain Frederick Marryat
  • The other fire-ship had been less calmly and skilfully managed.

    In Greek Waters G. A. Henty
  • The command was given to officers not noble, with the grade of captain of fire-ship.

  • He ran the enemy aboard to windward, lashed the fire-ship there, and fired the train.

    In Greek Waters G. A. Henty
  • One of his sons, an intrepid spirit, was killed by the explosion of a fire-ship before Tripoli, in which he was a volunteer.

  • The next two days Mitsos spent in learning the working of the fire-ship.

    The Vintage Edward Frederic Benson
British Dictionary definitions for fire-ship

fire ship

a vessel loaded with explosives and used, esp formerly, as a bomb by igniting it and directing it to drift among an enemy's warships
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for fire ship

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for fire

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for fire-ship