Meaning of SPARK in English


I. ˈspärk noun

Etymology: Middle English sparke, from Old English spearca; akin to Middle Dutch sparke spark and perhaps to Latin spargere to scatter

Date: before 12th century


a. : a small particle of a burning substance thrown out by a body in combustion or remaining when combustion is nearly completed

b. : a hot glowing particle struck from a larger mass ; especially : one heated by friction


a. : a luminous disruptive electrical discharge of very short duration between two conductors separated by a gas (as air)

b. : the discharge in a spark plug

c. : the mechanism controlling the discharge in a spark plug

3. : sparkle , flash

4. : something that sets off a sudden force

provided the spark that helped the team to rally

5. : a latent particle capable of growth or developing : germ

still retains a spark of decency

6. plural but singular in construction : a radio operator on a ship

II. verb

Date: 13th century

intransitive verb


a. : to throw out sparks

b. : to flash or fall like sparks

2. : to produce sparks ; specifically : to have the electric ignition working

3. : to respond with enthusiasm

transitive verb

1. : to set off in a burst of activity : activate

the question spark ed a lively discussion

— often used with off

2. : to stir to activity : incite

spark ed her team to victory

• spark·er noun

III. noun

Etymology: perhaps from spark (I)

Date: circa 1600

1. : a foppish young man

2. : lover , beau

• spark·ish ˈspär-kish adjective

IV. verb

Date: 1787

: woo , court

• spark·er noun

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate English vocabulary.      Энциклопедический словарь английского языка Merriam Webster.