Word of Week (WOW) – Febrile

wow (1)

Word of the Week (WOW) is a weekly challenge created by Heena Rathore P. It’s a fun way to improve vocabulary by learning new words every week. To participate, simply do a post with your word and leave the link as a comment on Heena’s WOW post for this week (above link).

I’m looking at the letter F this week.

So here is my WOW for this week: 





fe·brile  [fee-bruh l, feb-ruh l or, especially British, fee-brahyl]



Part of Speech


Related Forms:

Noun: febrility


  1. Having or showing the symptoms of a fever: a febrile illness:


2.  Characterised by a great deal of nervous excitement or energy: the febrile atmosphere of the city following the riots:

Riots in the Republic of Korea. Courtesy of Pixabay

Riots in the Republic of Korea. Courtesy of Pixabay


Word Origin:

1645-55 < New Latin, Medieval Latin febrīlis (fever)


Meaning 1:   feverish, hot, fevered, flushed, fiery, inflamed, delirious, febrific, pyretic (medicine), burning, buring up, sweating

Meaning 2:   anticipatory, interested, excited



Use in a Sentence:

1. Dr. Dennis looked levelly at Janet. ‘I must inform you, Mrs. Eliot, that your son’s febrile condition is synonymous with that of patients suffering from malaria, the disease caused by the bite of an infected mosquito. I believe he has just returned from the South America. . .?


Image courtesy of Pixabay

2. The atmosphere in the large stadium was febrile as teenagers screamed their approval of the latest hit single by their idol, Frothing Freddie from Framlington:


3. Signor Lorenzo Abbatelli sang with febrile intensity throughout the evening performance:


Image courtesy of Pixabay

If you’d like to view more interesting words, visit Heena’s Page

Word Treasure

About milliethom

I am a reader and writer of historical fiction with a keen interest in the Earth's history and all it involves, both physically and socially. I like nothing better than to be outdoors, especially in faraway places, and baking is something I do when my eyes need respite from my computer screen.
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30 Responses to Word of Week (WOW) – Febrile

  1. You always make these words so interesting

  2. Bekki Hill says:

    Now that’s not a word you hear very often.

  3. Joy Pixley says:

    Ooh, good sentences! I’m so glad you highlighted this word, because you made me realize that I’ve been pronouncing it wrong. Oh dear. I can’t imagine I’ve said the word out loud that many times, but I’m retroactively embarrassed anyway. Ah well, better late than never, right?

    • milliethom says:

      It’s not that common a word, so that’s understandable, Joy. I chose it because it wasn’t very well known and I could find reasonable illustrations for it. I’m glad the post got you out of a pckle. Lol 😀

  4. Clever challenge! When I saw the word you chose, I was immediately taken back to my kids’ infant and toddler years… middle of the night, crying, feverish, with exhausted new parents anxiously reading baby books trying to figure out what to do. The books did not ease our worries, but only added to them. A new danger to be on the lookout for during fevers… febrile seizures. Thankfully that never happened, but up until now that was my only frame of reference for febrile. So happy to have a new definition- the frenzy of excitement, a much better association!

    • milliethom says:

      I agree that febrile seizures are definitely something you don’t want. I’ve had a few scary moments with feverish toddlers, too. I think most new parents find illness of any kind in their little ones a traumatic experience. I well remember the feeling of being so inexperienced. We all start out as novices in the demanding job of parenting. 🙂
      I rather like the second definition, too. It’s quite a good one to use in the appropriate piece of writing. This challenge is open to anyone, but very few people do it. So if you fancy having a go, please do… When I started it, I decided to work my way through the alphabet, and this is my second time round. It’s a good post to do once a week and I enjoy looking for suitable images.

    • milliethom says:

      Thank you, Suzanne! It’s not a very common word this week, which is why I picked it as my ‘F’ word. I could aslo find plenty of images for this one, too. I really like the second definition, and think it could be used in a lot of interesting pieces of writing. 🙂

  5. exiledprospero says:

    Millie waved a febrile finger at Frothing Freddie (from Framlington), whence we can state categorically that she is not a fan the pop star wearing on stage a bowtie and something which can best be described as a chastity belt.

    • milliethom says:

      I think a pop star dressed like that, Prospero, would probably get far more than a febrile finger waved at him – including a rotten egg or two hurled in his direction. Teenagers of today – including Millie – have preconceived ideas of how pop stars should garb themselves whilst belting out their hit singles. 😀

  6. I love the feel of the word. The one with those teenagers febrily screaming is really like that(don’t know if I can use the word like that?).

    • milliethom says:

      Hi, Scrapydo. I can’t say I’ve ever seen febrily used but I don’t see why it shouldn’t be. It’s the adverb form of the word so it should be OK. I’ll look it up tomorrow when I get to my laptop. I’ m on my Kindle now, and find doing anything on it a bit tricky. Thank you for liking the word. 😀

  7. amommasview says:

    And I just learned something new… 🙂

  8. I love this segment also. I keep thinking this would be a great way to teach vocabulary to students. I have seen this one before, but apparently, promptly forgot it, ha ha! I have always been a word fan. Thanks, Millie.

    • milliethom says:

      Thanks, L.T. I really enjoy delving into the origins and various meanings of words. I suppose most people who enjoy writing love words – the ‘tools of the trade’ as they say. I agree that students would probably enjoy finding the illustrations and making up sentences to suit them. It would certainly help them to remember the word – and how to spell it. It’s the sort of activity that could work well as homework.

      • Yes it would, case in point, the class I’m teaching today, they are looking up words in the dictionary and writing definitions which is what I did way back in school. Internet and wonderful illustrations would help so much 🙂

  9. Although this is a word we don’t use very often, you always find various illustrations to explain the meaning of the word and make it possible for us to use it. Good job Millie! 😉

  10. leggypeggy says:

    What a great word choice. I’d only ever thought of it in relation to fever, so it’s nice to know the usage is much broader.

  11. What a nice and unique word, Millie. I’ve never heard of it, but I’m planning to keep it in mind for using it for my writing. Thanks 🙂
    Have a great day!

  12. Never heard of that one Millie… Love the sound of it…

    • milliethom says:

      Thanks, Tony. I agree, it’s not a very common word nowadays. Its use for describing a fever is very dated, but I quite like the way it can be used for over-excited.

  13. What a great idea Millie, a WOW! This weeks word is excellent, ‘febrile’ just has such feeling about it. Like a few people have commented on, it’s not a word you hear to often.

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