August 27, 2013
ember (noun)
\EM-ber\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
: a glowing piece of coal or wood from a fire; especially : such a piece smoldering in ashes
How do you use it?
The kids were asleep in their tents just after sunset but the grownups talked around the campfire until embers were all that remained of the fire.
Are you a word wiz?

"Ember" has the Latin word "urere," meaning "to burn," in its family tree. Which of the following words to you think is also related to "urere"?

Like "ember," "combust" has to do with fire, which makes sense given the meaning of "urere." "Combust" means "to be on fire" or "to set on fire." You're probably more familiar with the word "combustible," which means "able to be burned easily." A fuel like gasoline combusts easily, which means it is combustible. Another "urere" word is most at home in the kitchen: "broil" means "to cook directly over or under very high heat," as in "broil a steak."
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