Meaning of “firefly” in the English Dictionary


"firefly" in English

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fireflynoun [ C ]

uk /ˈfaɪə.flaɪ/ us /ˈfaɪr.flaɪ/

Examples from literature

  • Fireflies and glowworms make light to protect themselves. 
  • Glowworms make light to scare other animals, and some fireflies make light to show they aren’t good to eat. 
  • And in the trees there were owls, and in the bushes there were whip-poor-wills, and sometimes a mockingbird, but no other kinds of birds, and at night the fireflies were all about. 
  • If man could emit light in relative proportion to his size as compared with the firefly, he would need no other torch in the coal-mine. 
  • Outside innumerable fireflies studded the night with gold. 
  • The fireflies of the West Indies emit a continuous glow of considerable luminous intensity and the natives have used these imprisoned insects as light-sources. 
  • The wind was blowing, and there were fireflies, and the dogs were jumping up and down. 

(Definition of “firefly” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"firefly" in American English

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fireflynoun [ C ]

us /ˈfɑɪərˌflɑɪ/ also lightning bug

a small insect that produces flashes of light when it flies at night

(Definition of “firefly” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

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