One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A heap of combustible material, especially one for burning a corpse as part of a funeral ceremony.
- ‘The horrific TV pictures of huge burning pyres of animal carcases helped make animal welfare a more sensitive issue.’
- ‘Pawar, how can you stop the innumerable particles of dust rising from their burning pyres?’
- ‘Burning of carcasses on pyres was described as ‘barbaric and medieval’.’
- ‘Later, she burns it, in an image that brings to mind the burning pyres of sheep and cattle.’
- ‘With a ‘whoosh’, the dried wood and grasses caught fire, and the flames licked around the pyre.’
- ‘The most effective of the photographs is Gandhi's reflective and praying mood, beside the burning pyre of his wife.’
- ‘I let out a strangled gasp, recoiling from the corpse on the pyre as if its cold skin had burned my fingers.’
- ‘In the dark we went past a burning pyre only yards from the hedge separating the road and the field.’
- ‘Mondo then cast a Fire spell and allowed the blaze to consume the pyre.’
- ‘They built a pyre on a great ship and sent it burning into the sea.’
- ‘Just keep away from the burning pyres of fetid animal carcasses, and you'll be fine!’
- ‘This girl was blazing like a pyre of psymantic energy, with waves of blue and white constantly washing over her.’
- ‘Two people caught him and hurled him into the burning pyre.’
- ‘The best of helmets, gold and mail are placed on the pyre, and the fire grows, enveloping the great King.’
- ‘‘Re-starting burning in pyres might also be required,’ it warns.’
- ‘According to Mr Tobin, a Council overseer spotted the black plumes of polluting smoke from the burning pyre.’
- ‘We were almost fed up seeing all the corpses and pyres along the bank of the river.’
- ‘And the constant smog brought on by the burning-cattle pyres in Trafalgar Square is making my eyes water.’
- ‘Members of the family then left the burning pyre to go home and bathe.’
- ‘After a time, only one Sathe was left standing by the pyre that blazed in the circle.’
Mid 17th century: via Latin from Greek pura, from pur ‘fire’.
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