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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
fir cone
▪ At night, they lay on beds made from the branches of balsam firs.
▪ I spotted it briefly as it hopped among the thick branches of a balsam fir close above me.
▪ The balsam fir, which had not shown much decline prior to 1986, also began to be diminished.
▪ Here is also a carpet of two-to three-inch-tall balsam firs, and similarly-sized red maples.
▪ The balsam fir did not appear to be affected at all, or at least not much.
▪ The red spruces and balsam firs that dominated the vegetation near the mountaintop thrived under high rainfall and cool temperatures.
▪ There are also maple, spruce, pine and balsam fir saplings, and patches of wild raspberries and blueberries.
▪ The berm was now covered with a strip of forest, primarily of balsam fir and red maples.
▪ There were sudden sharp sounds, a fir cone dropping to the ground, a seagull.
▪ When I enter the hushed assembly of the fir trees, I see the cathedral of all religions.
▪ The next winter, the fir tree was chosen for a Christmas tree.
▪ It's been a long day of trundling past an infinity of fir trees, and photographer Ridgers has hardly survived it.
▪ The sharp ax hurt, and now the fir tree was unhappy at leaving its fine forest home.
▪ The Phalangists look innocent enough with their little moustaches and their campfires amid the fir trees, the stuff of youth movements.
▪ After an uncomfortable journey, the fir tree was erected in a large and beautifully furnished hall.
▪ Paul's promise of variety was soon fulfilled as we turned off the ridge and headed into a forest of fir trees.
▪ The fir tree thought it was being left there until spring, when it would be replanted.
▪ At night, they lay on beds made from the branches of balsam firs.
▪ He's awa' jist noo, but he's always hame fir Christmas.
▪ It hides everywhere from everywhere as each point of perspective is gained by herds of resinous firs.
▪ Sparkle's hull was built of two laminates of diagonally laid red cedar on an inner core of longitudinal Douglas fir.
▪ The basement behind formed the firs fire station with its antediluvian engine, and opposite was the police station.
▪ When some mice found the garret, the fir tree was happy for the company.
▪ You always clear away the soft topsoil till you get a fir base.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Pine \Pine\, n. [AS. p[=i]n, L. pinus.]

  1. (Bot.) Any tree of the coniferous genus Pinus. See Pinus.

    Note: There are about twenty-eight species in the United States, of which the white pine ( Pinus Strobus), the Georgia pine ( Pinus australis), the red pine ( Pinus resinosa), and the great West Coast sugar pine ( Pinus Lambertiana) are among the most valuable. The Scotch pine or fir, also called Norway or Riga pine ( Pinus sylvestris), is the only British species. The nut pine is any pine tree, or species of pine, which bears large edible seeds. See Pinon. [1913 Webster] The spruces, firs, larches, and true cedars, though formerly considered pines, are now commonly assigned to other genera.

  2. The wood of the pine tree.

  3. A pineapple. Ground pine. (Bot.) See under Ground. Norfolk Island pine (Bot.), a beautiful coniferous tree, the Araucaria excelsa. Pine barren, a tract of infertile land which is covered with pines. [Southern U.S.] Pine borer (Zo["o]l.), any beetle whose larv[ae] bore into pine trees. Pine finch. (Zo["o]l.) See Pinefinch, in the Vocabulary. Pine grosbeak (Zo["o]l.), a large grosbeak ( Pinicola enucleator), which inhabits the northern parts of both hemispheres. The adult male is more or less tinged with red. Pine lizard (Zo["o]l.), a small, very active, mottled gray lizard ( Sceloporus undulatus), native of the Middle States; -- called also swift, brown scorpion, and alligator. Pine marten. (Zo["o]l.)

    1. A European weasel ( Mustela martes), called also sweet marten, and yellow-breasted marten.

    2. The American sable. See Sable.

      Pine moth (Zo["o]l.), any one of several species of small tortricid moths of the genus Retinia, whose larv[ae] burrow in the ends of the branchlets of pine trees, often doing great damage.

      Pine mouse (Zo["o]l.), an American wild mouse ( Arvicola pinetorum), native of the Middle States. It lives in pine forests.

      Pine needle (Bot.), one of the slender needle-shaped leaves of a pine tree. See Pinus.

      Pine-needle wool. See Pine wool (below).

      Pine oil, an oil resembling turpentine, obtained from fir and pine trees, and used in making varnishes and colors.

      Pine snake (Zo["o]l.), a large harmless North American snake ( Pituophis melanoleucus). It is whitish, covered with brown blotches having black margins. Called also bull snake. The Western pine snake ( Pituophis Sayi) is chestnut-brown, mottled with black and orange.

      Pine tree (Bot.), a tree of the genus Pinus; pine.

      Pine-tree money, money coined in Massachusetts in the seventeenth century, and so called from its bearing a figure of a pine tree. The most noted variety is the pine tree shilling.

      Pine weevil (Zo["o]l.), any one of numerous species of weevils whose larv[ae] bore in the wood of pine trees. Several species are known in both Europe and America, belonging to the genera Pissodes, Hylobius, etc.

      Pine wool, a fiber obtained from pine needles by steaming them. It is prepared on a large scale in some of the Southern United States, and has many uses in the economic arts; -- called also pine-needle wool, and pine-wood wool.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

late 14c., from Old Norse fyri- "fir" or Old Danish fyr, both from Proto-Germanic *furkhon (cognates: Old High German foraha, German Föhre "fir"), from PIE root *perkwu-, originally meaning "oak," also "oak forest," but never "wood" (cognates: Sanskrit paraktah "the holy fig tree," Hindi pargai "the evergreen oak," Latin quercus "oak," Lombardic fereha "a kind of oak"). Old English had a cognate form in furhwudu "pine wood" (only in glosses, for Latin pinus), but the modern English word is more likely from Scandinavian and in Middle English fyrre glosses Latin abies "fir," which is of obscure origin.\n

\nAccording to Indo-Europeanists Gamkrelidze and Ivanov, "The semantics of the term clearly points to a connection between 'oak' and mountainous regions, which is the basis for the ancient European term applied to forested mountains" (such as Gothic fairgunni "mountainous region," Old English firgen "mountain forest," Middle High German Virgunt "mountain forest; Sudetes"). In the period 3300 B.C.E. to 400 B.C.E., conifers and birches gradually displaced oaks in northern European forests. "Hence it is no surprise that in the early history of the Germanic languages the ancient term for mountain oak and oak forest shifts to denote conifers and coniferous forests." [Thomas V. Gamkrelidze, Vjaceslav V. Ivanov, "Indo-European and the Indo-Europeans," Berlin, 1994]


n. 1 (context chiefly countable British English) Any conifer of a variety of genera, especially a Scots pine, ''Pinus sylvestris'' or a (vern: true fir) (''Abies''). 2 (context chiefly countable US English) A conifer of the genus ''Abies''. 3 (context uncountable English) Wood of such trees.

  1. n. nonresinous wood of a fir tree

  2. any of various evergreen trees of the genus Abies; chiefly of upland areas [syn: fir tree, true fir]


FIR or fir may refer to:

  • Fir, a type of conifer tree
  • USCGC Fir, either of two buoy tenders of the United States Coast Guard
  • Fir (mathematics), free ideal ring (a mathematical concept)

Usage examples of "fir".

On watch in the fir tree early the third afternoon, Alec saw Stamie emerge though the postern with a large basket on her back and set off into the woods.

Ah run n kick the boy n the leg, aimin fir ehs baws, n Gentleman brings the half-boatil ay voddy doon oan toap ay ehs heid.

The boxwood hedges and sweeping fir boughs were frosted with white, glittering with faint crystalline sparkles.

Occasionally, as we floated down, vineyards were visible with the vines trained on horizontal trellises, or bamboo rails, often forty feet long, nailed horizontally on cryptomeria to a height of twenty feet, on which small sheaves of barley were placed astride to dry till the frame was full More forest, more dreams, then the forest and the abundant vegetation altogether disappeared, the river opened out among low lands and banks of shingle and sand, and by three we were on the outskirts of Niigata, whose low houses,--with rows of stones upon their roofs, spread over a stretch of sand, beyond which is a sandy roll with some clumps of firs.

Git tae France, Terry laughs, glancin oot taewards the windae, what dae wi need that fir?

There were deodars, Douglas firs, casuarinas, gum trees, eucalypti, hibiscus, cedars, and other trees, generally of a moderate size, for their number prevented their growth.

A bit farther off, nearly hidden in a stand of billowy firs, was a doorless garage, in which he could see a large tractor with a yellow plow on the front.

A CALIFORNIA ROMANCE by Bret Harte CHAPTER I Just where the track of the Los Gatos road streams on and upward like the sinuous trail of a fiery rocket until it is extinguished in the blue shadows of the Coast Range, there is an embayed terrace near the summit, hedged by dwarf firs.

But this forest was only composed of coniferae, such as deodaras, already recognized by Herbert, and Douglas pine, similar to those which grow on the northwest coast of America, and splendid firs, measuring a hundred and fifty feet in height.

The hills shouldered it friendlily, hills with wide green rides among the firs and sometimes a bald nose of granite.

Here, the forested foothills of the coast gave way to slab-sided ravines, notched with the gashed seams of past rockfalls and spindled thickets of fir.

The firs, where Iberville and Gering had just plucked out their swords, were not far, and both men heard.

Pesquil stood up, his iron gray hair at one with the gloaming in the fir thickets.

Farther down came the hemlock in globular masses of feathery branches, then the crowding spruce and fir, with a pale sprinkle of hackmatack, frail child of the swamp, in the bottoms, and a fringe of birch and maple along the shore.

Hemlock scents mingled with fir and something headily sweet that Diesa thought was osmanthus.