Definition of mire in English:


Line breaks: mire
Pronunciation: /mʌɪə


1A stretch of swampy or boggy ground: acres of land had been reduced to a mire
More example sentences
  • One side was fence, the other a swamp, a mire skewered by rotting birch trunks bracketed by hard tinder fungi.
  • As the annual flood inundates the delta, the cats are forced to cope with expanses of water that fragment their homes into a series of small islands and their hunting ground into dangerous, watery mires.
  • Open water falling within the delineation was discounted, but mire and swamp forest were not.
1.1 [mass noun] Soft mud or dirt: the roads retained their winter mire
More example sentences
  • Besides removal of mud and mire which had accumulated since long at the bottom of the spring a number of gold ornaments and silver pieces offered to the Goddess were recovered.
  • Quickly we hauled the canoe ashore and began to follow on foot, but the muck and mire made a chase on land impossible.
  • It has been likened to the lotus, whose exquisite, fragrant blossom grows out of the muck and mire.
1.2 Ecology A wetland area or ecosystem based on peat.
More example sentences
  • Human-induced sinking raised bogs and commercial peat cutting contributed to a process whereby the extensive raised bogs and mires became large freshwater lakes, easily covering more than 50 percent of the former land.
  • These are classed as areas of county importance for their wildlife, which include ancient woodlands, species-rich grasslands and meadows, wetlands and mires.
  • This implies that throughout the development of each mire, base level rose and accommodation rates increased.
2A complicated or unpleasant situation from which it is difficult to extricate oneself: the service is sinking in the mire of its own regulations
More example sentences
  • Its good, its proactive and there's no time to sink into the mire of self doubt and hopelessness if you are expending energy (preferably on inanimate objects).
  • It did eventually sink into a murky mire of sickening sentimentality that left me feeling nauseous, but hey, that's just me.
  • Meanwhile, they are six clear of Rangers who sank further into the mire yesterday when they could only get a draw at home to Inverness Caley Thistle.


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1Cause to become stuck in mud: sometimes a heavy truck gets mired down
More example sentences
  • A trip around a field to investigate moisture levels resulted in a four-wheel drive all terrain vehicle getting mired down.
  • In them are the bones of hundreds of dinosaurs, including skeletons of giant brontosaurs which were mired in soft mud.
  • They marched along the banners and got mired in the mud, screaming for help.
1.1Cover or spatter with mud: the horse waded through the red mud that mired it to its hocks
dirty, soil, muddy, begrime, spatter, smear, make muddy/dirty, cake with dirt/soil
1.2 (mire someone/thing in) Involve someone or something in (a difficult situation): the economy is mired in its longest recession since the war
More example sentences
  • Even then, change will be difficult because the team is mired in a ‘the future is now’ philosophy, even when the present is bleak and unpromising.
  • They always believe themselves to be in the right, no matter how much wickedness they are mired in.
  • The flyover projects are stuck with no sign of a resolution of whatever conflicts they are mired in.


Middle English: from Old Norse mýrr, of Germanic origin; related to moss.

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