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



    BrE BrE//ˈaɪən//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈaɪərn//
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  1. 1   [uncountable] (symbol Fe) a chemical element. Iron is a hard strong metal that is used to make steel and is also found in small quantities in blood and food. cast/wrought/corrugated iron iron gates/bars/railings an iron and steel works iron ore (= rock containing iron) patients with iron deficiency (= not enough iron in their blood) iron tablets (= containing iron prepared as a medicine) (figurative) She had a will of iron (= it was very strong).
  2. tool
  3. 2   [countable] a tool with a flat metal base that can be heated and used to make clothes smooth a steam iron
  4. 3 [countable] (usually in compounds) a tool made of iron or another metal see also branding iron, soldering iron, tire iron
  5. for prisoners
  6. 4irons [plural] chains or other heavy objects made of iron, attached to the arms and legs of prisoners, especially in the past leg irons (old-fashioned) to clap somebody in irons
  7. in golf
  8. 5[countable] one of the set of clubs (= sticks for hitting the ball with) that have a metal head He hit a magnificent shot with a nine iron. compare wood See related entries: Golf
  9. Word OriginOld English īren, īsen, īsern, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch ijzer and German Eisen, and probably ultimately from Celtic.Extra examples I just need to run an iron over my shirt, then I’m ready. I was put on iron tablets for my anaemia. They mine iron ore locally. Use a cool iron on synthetics. You can use a curling iron to create soft curls. a bridge made of wrought iron a hut with a corrugated iron roof foods that are rich in iron patients with iron deficiencyIdioms
    have several, etc. irons in the fire
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    to be involved in several activities or areas of business at the same time, hoping that at least one will be successful
    (informal) to do exercises in which you lift heavy weights in order to make your muscles stronger See related entries: Exercise
    rule (somebody/something) with a rod of iron
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    to control a person or a group of people very severely
    strike while the iron is hot
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    (saying) to make use of an opportunity immediately This expression refers to a blacksmith making a shoe for a horse. He has to strike/hammer the iron while it is hot enough to bend into the shape of the shoe.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: iron