misfire

[v. mis-fiuhr; n. mis-fahyuhr]
verb (used without object), misfired, misfiring.
1.
(of a rifle or gun or of a bullet or shell) to fail to fire or explode.
2.
(of an internal-combustion engine) to fail to ignite properly or when expected.
3.
to fail to achieve the desired result, effect, etc.: His criticisms completely misfired.
noun
4.
an act or instance of misfiring.

Origin:
1745–55; mis-1 + fire

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
misfire (ˌmɪsˈfaɪə)
 
vb
1.  (of a firearm or its projectile) to fail to fire, explode, or ignite as or when expected
2.  (of a motor engine or vehicle, etc) to fail to fire at the appropriate time, often causing a backfire
3.  to fail to operate or occur as intended
 
n
4.  the act or an instance of misfiring

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

misfire
1752, of a gun, 1905, of an internal combustion engine; see mis- (1) + fire (v.). The noun is attested from 1839.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
If one is killed by a bullet aimed or simply a misfire, dead is dead.
Major decisions would be put off for weeks until suddenly she would erupt,
  driving her staff to panic and misfire.
Must have thrown the button pushers off enough for them to make the rocket
  misfire and explode.
Major decisions would be put off for weeks until suddenly she would erupt,
  driving her staff to panic and misfire.
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