Add fuel to the fire

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The idiom add fuel to the fire has an ancient origin. We will examine the meaning of the idiom add fuel to the fire, where it came from, and some examples of its use in sentences.

Add fuel to the fire means to make a bad situation worse, to aggravate an already touchy situation, to make someone more angry or more annoyed. The idiom add fuel to the fire can be traced back to ancient Rome and The history of Titus Livius who lived around 1AD: “Not withstanding my remonstrance, you have added fuel to this fire, by sending to your army a youth who burns with an ambition of sovereignty…” Related phrases are adds fuel to the fire, added fuel to the fire, adding fuel to the fire.


“We have all the other girls coming into the team for the test match too, and I think that will add a bit of fuel to the fire, and I think we’re going to take every day as it comes in the leadup to the next match.” (Hunter Women’s Chronicle)

The tweet was highly polarizing for a myriad of reasons that have helped to, once again, add fuel to the fire of politics in sports. (The Carolinian)

As if to add fuel to the fire, S&P Global Ratings released a report late last week with the title “Weakest Links Reach a 10-Year High.” (The Asset Securitization Report)

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