Definition of crucible in English:


Syllabification: cru·ci·ble
Pronunciation: /ˈkro͞osəb(ə)l


1A ceramic or metal container in which metals or other substances may be melted or subjected to very high temperatures.
More example sentences
  • Molten magnesium does not attack iron in the same way as molten aluminum, and the metal can therefore be melted and held at temperature in crucibles fabricated from ferrous materials.
  • Platinum crucibles are used to melt high-quality optical glass and to grow crystals for computer chips and lasers.
  • Thousands of stone hammers, anvils, crucibles, metal objects, and pieces of ancient metallurgical debris were also recovered.
1.1A place or occasion of severe test or trial: the crucible of combat
More example sentences
  • I recall a lecturer in my first week at university saying we students shouldn't be afraid of airing theories, no matter how weird or fantastical, because they should be brought into the open and tested in the crucible of debate.
  • All of my friendships were tested in the crucible of those terrible days when we first discovered and began to deal with my daughter's illness.
  • The young men and women who have been through the crucible of combat - often on repeated deployments - are hardly naive.
1.2A place or situation in which different elements interact to produce something new: the crucible of the new Romantic movement
More example sentences
  • We were at Greenwich Village at the time of the wonderful crucible of creative alteration of the nation.
  • The 5th-century BCE context nevertheless was the crucible in which the ideas and approaches of many different schools of thought were clearly formulated and established in relation to one another.
  • For instance, wetlands that exist between the ocean and the land are fertile crucibles whose extraordinary biodiversity leads to natural evolutions that are crucial to the viability and ongoing evolution of the larger systems.


late Middle English: from medieval Latin crucibulum 'night lamp, crucible' (perhaps originally a lamp hanging in front of a crucifix), from Latin crux, cruc- 'cross'.

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Pronunciation: ˈrɛtrə(ʊ)flɛks
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