Definition of spark noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//spɑːk//
    ; NAmE NAmE//spɑːrk//
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  1. 1[countable] a very small burning piece of material that is produced by something that is burning or by hitting two hard substances together A shower of sparks flew up the chimney. A spark from the machinery had set fire to some material.
  2. 2[countable] a small flash of light produced by an electric current sparks from a faulty light switch A spark ignites the fuel in a car engine.
  3. 3[countable, usually singular] spark of something a small amount of a particular quality or feeling synonym glimmer a spark of hope The woman’s eyes still had a spark of life in them.
  4. 4[uncountable, singular] a special quality of energy, intelligence or enthusiasm that makes somebody very clever, amusing, etc. As a writer he seemed to lack creative spark. She was a real star. She had a certain spark—that something extra.
  5. 5[countable] an action or event that causes something important to develop, especially trouble or violence the sparks of revolution
  6. 6[countable, usually plural] feelings of anger or excitement between people Sparks flew at the meeting (= there was a lot of argument). She was suddenly aware of the romantic spark between them.
  7. Word OriginOld English spærca, spearca, of unknown origin.Extra examples Flying sparks ignited the dry grass. Flying sparks set fire to the dry grass. He had kindled a spark of interest within her. Her eyes shot sparks of contempt. Her performance added a little spark to the movie. His iron-tipped stick struck sparks from the pavement. His performances lack creative spark. His remarks drew sparks from her. She didn’t have a spark of talent in her. She felt a little spark of anger. Sparks flew at the meeting. The firework showered sparks all over the lawn. The grinding wheel sent a shower of sparks across the workbench. a spark of hope/​life She had a certain spark—that something extra that made her a star. She had lost none of the spark that had made her such an endearing young bride. The players have shown that they still possess the spark to make a fight of it. These were the sparks of revolution.Idioms (British English, informal, often ironic) a lively and intelligent person, especially somebody young Some bright spark (= stupid person) left the tap running all night.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: spark