Main definitions of spark in English

: spark1spark2

spark1

noun

  • 1A small fiery particle thrown off from a fire, alight in ashes, or produced by striking together two hard surfaces such as stone or metal.

    • ‘Berndon shouted when he finally coaxed the small spark into a flaming fire.’
    • ‘Keep the woodpile far enough away from the fire so sparks and flames cannot reach it.’
    • ‘Rannyn rolled his eyes and threw more wood on the fire sending sparks everywhere.’
    • ‘In a panic, he sprayed the computer with the makeshift flamethrower, and the monitor of his computer exploded in a shower of sparks and fire.’
    • ‘Once again the floor was filled with sparks and fire.’
    • ‘The pipes are broken and, caused by metal rubbing hard against metal, sparks ignite the gas.’
    • ‘Two stones rubbed themselves together and a spark lit and a fire was kindled on the wood piece.’
    • ‘Their swords clashed together, emitting sparks, and making a horrible screeching sound.’
    • ‘The Duke threw his piece of meat into the fire, causing sparks, and got up.’
    • ‘The striking of steel against steel threw dazzling sparks in every direction.’
    • ‘Some of the footprints still held the fire sparks in them.’
    • ‘The two work well together, striking sparks when the need arises.’
    • ‘She shaded her eyes and crouched beside him, the fire crackling and sending sparks into the morning air.’
    • ‘A full moon hung over the small camp, the sparks from the fire dancing in its glow.’
    • ‘Special effects such as fire, smoke and sparks add greatly to the atmosphere.’
    • ‘Not only did it protect him from predators, it also helped him in his hunt for food and it provided him with the sparks needed to make fire.’
    • ‘When the glass was empty, Jacob shook his head, throwing off sparks.’
    1. 1.1A light produced by a sudden disruptive electrical discharge through the air.
    2. 1.2An electrical discharge serving to ignite the explosive mixture in an internal combustion engine.
    3. 1.3A small bright object or point.
      ‘there was a spark of light’
  • 2A trace of a specified quality or intense feeling.

    ‘a tiny spark of anger flared within her’
    • ‘In a spark of anger he hated everything about Amy, from her ugly light brown hair, to her even uglier sneakers.’
    • ‘Did I imagine it or was there a gleam of expectation, a spark of hope in his eyes?’
    • ‘When I was around him, his face seemed to show a small spark of happiness.’
    • ‘She saw in his eyes a spark of anger and trepidation, as he said nothing.’
    • ‘Ann's eyes narrowed and Ryan saw a spark of anger there.’
    • ‘The pretty green eyes didn't hold a trace of disgust or annoyance, just mild interest and a spark of something close to fear.’
    • ‘I hate being quizzed, so a little spark of anger flared in me.’
    • ‘That thought kindled a tiny spark of hope in Sorsha.’
    • ‘Finally a spark of anger flared in her mother's eyes.’
    • ‘Through a series of chance encounters, Allie and Noah meet once more and find the spark of their previous romance is still very much alive.’
    • ‘He looked up, meeting Mac's gaze with a spark of curiosity.’
    • ‘I tried to ignore the spark of interest that entered her eyes.’
    • ‘Vicky's eyes darted anxiously and there was a spark of fear.’
    • ‘He laughed at me, which sent a small spark of anger through me but I was too tired to really care.’
    • ‘The real passion, the spark of life, takes place in the kitchen.’
    • ‘She squeezed lightly and I turned to face her, saw the compassion and grief and the tiny spark of hope burning in those icy blue eyes.’
    • ‘In response, a sudden spark of intense jealousy stabbed through Kaezik before he stifled it and pushed it firmly from his thoughts.’
    • ‘She looked up and over at me, a spark of anger in her eyes.’
    • ‘A spark of hope flared, when he thought of how it could've happened so long ago.’
    • ‘No one in this film shows a spark of charismatic quality, much less any halfhearted attempts at believable characterization.’
    particle, iota, jot, whit, glimmer, flicker, atom, speck, bit, trace, vestige, ounce, shred, crumb, morsel, fragment, grain, drop, spot, mite, tittle, jot or tittle, modicum, hint, touch, suggestion, whisper, suspicion, scintilla
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1A sense of liveliness and excitement.
      ‘there was a spark between them at their first meeting’
      • ‘It was a memorable concert, but it lacked the energy and spark that I'd heard on his live albums.’
      • ‘And it reminds you, I think, when you work with young actors and young film-makers, that spark that you initially had.’
      • ‘She had that gleam in her eyes, that nutty, excited spark.’
      • ‘Nothing has a spark or spirit of contemporary Aphex Twin.’
      • ‘The job just didn't provide me with the spark, excitement, and the security I needed.’
      • ‘What was the initial spark that got you interested in acting?’
      • ‘The lyrics don't seem to communicate anything, and there's no vitality, passion, or spark in the musical performance.’
      • ‘Your creative spark is stronger, and your sense of confidence and flow calms everyone around you.’

verb

  • 1[no object] Emit sparks of fire or electricity.

    ‘the ignition sparks as soon as the gas is turned on’
    • ‘The fire popped and sparked as if trying to answer, but it had only temporarily broken the silence.’
    • ‘The fire sparked, then relit, recovering its flames with unnerving speed.’
    • ‘The electricity sparked and sections of the subway began to catch fire.’
    • ‘Fire sparked, rose to a peak and danced under heated fumes that rose, tore at its periphery and crumbled to ashes.’
    • ‘The fire crackled and sparked, sending small bits of flame into the crisp night air.’
    1. 1.1Produce sparks at the point where an electric circuit is interrupted.
  • 2[with object] Ignite.

    ‘the explosion sparked a fire’
    • ‘Many dogs have chewed through dangerous items like extension cords and the like. This of course can injure the dog severely or even spark a fire.’
    • ‘The blue lights in the centre sparked a little with the remaining power, but all the light soon died away and all that remained was the moonlight.’
    • ‘If you get enough methane in a basement, you can spark an explosion.’
    • ‘The Reavers sat near the fire pit they had gathered; one lit the kindling, sparking a roaring fire in the middle of the morning.’
    • ‘He tried sparking a fire with some dry grass and twigs and a piece of flint he had found but was unsuccessful.’
    • ‘Quickly, what was it that sparked the light bulb?’
    • ‘If they are placed under rugs or carpets, heat can build and spark a fire.’
    • ‘If you have sufficient physical energy but are feeling dull and languid, you need a movement pattern with some creative fire to spark your life force.’
    1. 2.1Provide the stimulus for (a dramatic event or process)
      ‘the severity of the plan sparked off street protests’
      • ‘This last question has sparked an interesting debate.’
      • ‘He was by no means the type of man anyone would expect to spark the sexual revolution of the 1960s, but he did.’
      • ‘I'm always on the lookout for imagery that will spark my painting process.’
      • ‘The notion that the cinema's closure somehow sparked the riots is well considered and not totally unbelievable.’
      • ‘Well, this news sparked the famous debate, fruit or vegetable?’
      • ‘The most recent economic downturn has actually sparked an increase in spending on the tailored marketing vehicles.’
      • ‘America's announcement in January 1950 of plans to develop the H-bomb sparked the beginnings of a global anti-nuclear protest movement.’
      • ‘Pellegrino, for example, says consumer comments often spark packaging changes.’
      • ‘No question, the computer age has sparked major changes in business and in everyday lives.’
      • ‘The defendant was in control insofar as he had created a foreseeable danger, which could have been sparked off by an innocent event.’
      • ‘The definition of ‘medically necessary procedures’ has also sparked debate.’
      • ‘Sigman also plans to spark growth through aggressive marketing.’
      • ‘The 1905 Russian Revolution was sparked off by a peaceful protest held on January 22nd.’
      • ‘Since the beginning of the year, this political shift has sparked a debate on the exploitation of ancient sites and their images for commercial ends.’
      • ‘Those provocative words have sparked an emotional debate and strong reactions.’
      • ‘Ethnic rivalries then produced sharp struggles among the emerging Congolese political parties and sparked severe riots in Brazzaville in 1959.’
      • ‘Enquiries by the Economist sparked a crisis meeting which took up most of Thursday.’
      • ‘The delivery giant's founder recalls how he started it, what made it take off, and why it helped spark a revolution in business’
      • ‘The 1998 Biodevastation Gathering sparked subsequent events in Seattle, New Delhi, Boston, San Diego and Toronto.’
      • ‘While he said he didn't know exactly what sparked his outburst, there is little doubt that it was connected to the frequent intimidation he suffered at school.’

Phrases

  • spark out

    • informal Completely unconscious.

      ‘I think he would knock Bowe spark out’
      • ‘One of Ali's greatest admirers is the man who once came very close to being knocked spark out on live television by the selfsame Ali.’
      • ‘I didn't just stop him last time: I knocked him spark out.’
      • ‘I turn my back to him to check the mixing desk and when I turn round he's spark out, cigarette hanging from his bottom lip and guitar still slung across his body.’
      • ‘His wife found him on the settee spark out with his phone still in his hand, so being the loving wife she went to put it on charge for him.’
      • ‘Two years ago, big Manny Siaca, now a light-heavyweight, was ahead on points against Mitchell before the champion knocked him spark out in the last round.’
  • sparks fly

    • An encounter becomes heated or lively.

      ‘sparks always fly when you two get together’
      • ‘Olschok seems more preoccupied by attempting to thrill the audience than he his trying at make sure sparks fly between the two leads.’
      • ‘Sure Ben was nice and held me when I needed comforting but Trevor's touch made sparks fly for some reason.’
      • ‘What kind of sparks fly when Olivia realizes her dreams of a lazy weekend are thwarted?’
      • ‘One day someone will get Tiga and Kelis on a track together, and watch the sparks fly when they do.’
      • ‘Lisa was disappointed, she really wanted to see sparks fly between the two of them.’
      • ‘From the very first he had seen the sparks fly between them, but he had never imagined that it would come to this.’
      • ‘At times, she swore she saw a few sparks fly in the space between the two.’
      • ‘Watch the sparks fly in some churches if and when such a discussion takes place.’
      • ‘The moment you two met in that studio, the moment your hands touched, I saw sparks fly.’
      • ‘I at least want the opportunity, and the chance to see if the sparks fly like I have been dreaming they will!’

Origin

Old English spærca, spearca, of unknown origin.

Pronunciation:

spark

/spärk/

Main definitions of spark in English

: spark1spark2

spark2

noun

Archaic
  • A lively young fellow.

verb

[NO OBJECT]Archaic
  • Engage in courtship.

Origin

Early 16th century: probably a figurative use of spark.

Pronunciation:

spark

/spärk/