Definition of arson in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈärs(ə)n/


The criminal act of deliberately setting fire to property: police are treating the fire as arson [as modifier]: an arson attack
More example sentences
  • The fire was caused by arson, but so far the culprit has not been caught.
  • However, experts have since cast doubt over the forensic tests used to decide the fire was arson.
  • It is not known what caused the fire, but arson or a discarded cigarette end have not been ruled out.


Late 17th century: an Anglo-Norman French legal term, from medieval Latin arsio(n-), from Latin ardere 'to burn'.

  • This was an Anglo-Norman legal term which came from Latin ardere ‘to burn’.

Words that rhyme with arson

Carson, fasten, parson, sarsen

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ar·son

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