v. in·flamed, in·flam·ing, in·flames
1. To arouse to passionate feeling or action: crimes that inflamed the entire community.
2. To make more violent; intensify: "inflamed to madness an already savage nature" (Robert Graves).
a. To cause (the skin) to redden or grow hot, as from strong emotion or stimulants.
b. To turn red or make glow: Great bonfires inflamed the night.
4. To produce inflammation in (a tissue or organ).
5. To set on fire; kindle.
1. To become excited or aroused.
2. To be affected by inflammation.
3. To catch fire.
[Middle English enflaumen, from Old French enflammer, from Latin īnflammāre : in-, intensive pref.; see IN-2 + flammāre, to set on fire (from flamma, flame; see bhel-1 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots).]
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.