Definition of fever in English:



  • 1An abnormally high body temperature, usually accompanied by shivering, headache, and in severe instances, delirium.

    ‘she had a slight fever’
    [mass noun] ‘quinine was used to reduce malarial fever’
    • ‘Tooth abscesses can also cause fever (high temperature), shivers and general aches and pains.’
    • ‘Aspirin is good for relieving pain, reducing fevers, and reducing inflammation caused by injury or arthritis.’
    • ‘You might commonly take it for a headache, a fever or for arthritis pain.’
    • ‘Rarely, flu can develop into a high fever, acute bronchitis, encephalitis and pneumonia.’
    • ‘There is tenderness over the appendix, often accompanied by a slight fever, a facial flush, and a rapid pulse.’
    • ‘The reaction typically occurs 7 to 10 days after starting the drug and is associated with fevers, diarrhoea, respiratory symptoms and it is extremely unpleasant for the patient.’
    • ‘Lassa fever presents with symptoms and signs indistinguishable from those of febrile illnesses such as malaria and other viral haemorrhagic fevers such as Ebola.’
    • ‘For some reason, children's bodies are less able to control high temperatures and fevers and sometimes this seems to cause a seizure.’
    • ‘Clinical history revealed a mild flu-like illness accompanied by a low-grade fever over the past week.’
    • ‘The beneficial effects of hot baths and malarial fevers in syphilis were noted as early as the 15th century.’
    • ‘Illness is characterized by abrupt onset of fever, myalgia and headache.’
    • ‘Maternal fever and suspected neonatal infection were the indications with the lowest examination rates.’
    • ‘Your body raises its temperature, creating a fever, in an attempt to kill off harmful microorganisms.’
    • ‘A person with glandular fever is most infectious when they have a fever (high temperature).’
    • ‘I've been plagued by nausea and fever the last few days, so don't expect any works of literature from me.’
    • ‘Initial signs and symptoms are generalized malaise, chills, fevers, headaches, arthralgias, and a nonproductive cough.’
    • ‘Call your doctor if your child also gets a fever, diarrhea, headache, or skin rash.’
    • ‘The major uses I have employed it for are upper respiratory conditions, allergies, coughs, colds, bronchitis, fevers, flu, asthma and emphysema for which it is effective.’
    • ‘You have a severe headache with fever, sickness and possibly a rash.’
    • ‘Patients commonly reported headache, fever, nausea or vomiting, stiff neck, and photophobia.’
    feverishness, high temperature, febricity, febrility
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A state of nervous excitement or agitation.
      ‘I was mystified, and in a fever of expectation’
      • ‘He shifted in his sleep, his eyes fluttering in the fever of a dream.’
      • ‘The air is thick with sweat and sweet perfume, the fever of adolescence.’
      • ‘Why then, last November, did I find Georgians in such a fever of expectation?’
      • ‘When the girls had left, Zara turned to Paz in a fever of agitation.’
    2. 1.2[mass noun], [with modifier]The excitement felt by a group of people about a particular public event.
      ‘election fever reaches its climax tomorrow’
      • ‘With election fever growing, the spending review was inevitably party political.’
      • ‘In each case, the public's lotto fever simply got out of control.’
      • ‘They know well that in the short time span up to June 11 and with election fever in the air this debate will not be reasonable.’
      • ‘The people are well cured by then of election fever, during which they think they are choosing Moses.’
      • ‘And getting his head around the chaotic cup fever scenes in the town where he did his growing up - at least in a sporting sense - is certainly not easy.’
      • ‘Fears that election fever will degenerate into an orgy of violence were confirmed when three Russian police officers were killed in an attack in the capital Grozny.’
      • ‘In the meantime, however, St-Maurice has caught federal election fever.’
      • ‘It's election fever in the streets of Sierra Leone's capital, Freetown.’
      • ‘And maybe a few acid drops to cool that mounting election fever.’
      • ‘In common with the rest of the country, Borris-in-Ossory was gripped by election fever, during the past few weeks.’
      • ‘First day of Spring and Sydney catches mainstream federal election fever via sidelines.’
      • ‘Despite the Opposition's election fever, the UNC benches in Parliament yesterday were devoid of tension.’
      • ‘With all the election fever the West seems to have forgotten that there is an occupation going on.’
      • ‘At one point, it seemed as if the whole nation had come to a standstill as cricket fever gripped the public imagination like never before.’
      • ‘The idea is that Londoners will be in need of a big squeeze as election fever gets worse.’
      • ‘Get ready for a month of sniping, bitching, mud slinging and baby-kissing, kiddies, because election fever is here!’
      • ‘Two years later, when Ireland qualified for the 1990 World Cup, soccer fever reached its pinnacle.’
      • ‘As election fever heats up, both sides are calling their supporters onto the streets.’
      • ‘As election fever mounts, parties are going after one another in wars of words, and lawsuits and counter charges are flying about.’
      • ‘Most of the forms went to volatile city wards where election fever was at its height.’
      ferment, frenzy, furore, ecstasy, rapture, hubbub, hurly-burly
      excitement, frenzy, agitation, turmoil, restlessness, unrest, passion
      View synonyms


[WITH OBJECT]archaic
  • Bring about a high body temperature or a state of nervous excitement in.

    ‘a heart which sin has fevered’
    • ‘Not since the Pilgrim Fathers boarded a cruise ship for new lives in the redskin-ridden plains of America has such wanderlust fevered the British brain.’
    • ‘But like boils that erupt at separate places on the skin, they are fevered into being by one invisible short-circuited wiring in the body politic beneath.’


Old English fēfor, from Latin febris; reinforced in Middle English by Old French fievre, also from febris.