a. A very strong gust of wind or air.
b. The effect of such a gust.
2. A forcible stream of air, gas, or steam from an opening, especially one in a blast furnace to aid combustion.
a. A sudden loud sound, especially one produced by a stream of forced air: a piercing blast from the steam whistle.
b. The act of producing such a sound: gave a blast on his trumpet.
a. A violent explosion, as of dynamite or a bomb.
b. The violent effect of such an explosion, consisting of a wave of increased atmospheric pressure followed immediately by a wave of decreased pressure.
c. An explosive charge.
5. Botany Any of several plant diseases of diverse causes, resulting in sudden death of buds, flowers, foliage, or young fruits.
6. A destructive or damaging influence.
7. A powerful hit, blow, or shot.
8. A violent verbal assault or outburst: The candidate leveled a blast at her opponent.
9. Slang A highly exciting or pleasurable experience or event, such as a big party.
v. blast·ed, blast·ing, blasts
1. To knock down or shatter by explosion; smash.
2. To play or sound loudly: The amplifiers blasted the music.
a. To cause to move with great force; hurl: The volcanic eruption blasted rock far and wide.
b. To make or open by explosion: blast a tunnel through the mountains.
a. To shoot or destroy by shooting: fighter jets trying to blast each other out of the sky.
b. Sports To hit, kick, or shoot (a ball or puck) with great force.
5. To have a harmful or destructive effect on: a loss that blasted our hopes of making the playoffs.
6. To criticize or attack vigorously: blasted the mayor for hypocrisy.
7. To cause to shrivel, wither, or mature imperfectly by blast or blight: crops that were blasted by frost.
v. intr.Phrasal Verb:
1. To use or detonate explosives.
2. To emit a loud, intense sound; blare: speakers blasting at full volume.
3. To discharge a weapon, especially repeatedly; shoot: blasted away at the target.
4. To attack someone or something verbally; criticize.
5. To move with great speed or power: a motorcycle blasting down the road.
6. Electronics To distort sound recording or transmission by overloading a microphone or loudspeaker.
7. To wither or shrivel or mature imperfectly.
To take off, as a rocket.
At full speed, volume, or capacity: turned the radio up full blast.
[Middle English, from Old English blǣst; see bhlē- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
Synonyms: blast, blight, dash1, wither, wreck
These verbs mean to have a pernicious, destructive, or ruinous effect on something: actions that blasted any chance for peace; a neighborhood blighted by poverty; ambitions dashed by lack of funds; a harsh critique that withered their enthusiasm; a life wrecked by depression.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.