burn away

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burn away

1. To continue burning (as of something that is already ablaze). We watched helplessly as our house burned away despite the firefighters' efforts. The candles on the birthday cake burned away while Molly made a wish.
2. To obliterate with fire, as of an object or substance that has been ignited. It's getting cold in here again because all the logs in the fireplace have burned away.
3. To use heat to remove something, as in a medical procedure. In this usage, a noun can be used between "burn" and "away." The doctor told me that he will have to burn away some tissue to alleviate my pain.
See also: away, burn

burn something away

to remove or destroy something by burning. The doctor burned the wart away. The doctor burned away the wart.
See also: away, burn

burn away

 
1. [for something] to burn until there is no more of it. All the oil burned away. The logs burned away and the fireplace was cooling down.
2. for something to keep on burning. The little fire burned away brightly, warming the tiny room. The candle burned away, giving a tiny bit of light to the huge room.
See also: away, burn
References in classic literature ?
And yet I have had the weakness, and have still the weakness, to wish you to know with what a sudden mastery you kindled me, heap of ashes that I am, into fire--a fire, however, inseparable in its nature from myself, quickening nothing, lighting nothing, doing no service, idly burning away.
By burning away excess calories and reducing levels of white fat, brown fat can help prevent weight gain.
Karen rushed to her pet's aid and saw he was covered in a mysterious purple liquid that was burning away at his fur.
Karen rushed to her pet's aid and saw he was covered in a mystery purple liquid that was burning away at his fur.
Abu Dhabi Suhail Jashanmal was shocked to find that nobody would stop to put out a fire that was burning away a precious mangrove in the Saada area.
But it was burning away and I think a member of public must have spotted it and put the call in.
We have our forward-looking council which has retained its 2004 Christmas lights along the Millennium Walk ever since they were put up in November of that year, burning away quite merrily.
Forty-five bulldozers and hundreds of crew members are cutting and burning away brush to create a line to halt the flames -- containment lines the Day Fire has mocked since it began.
the sound of the gurney carrying you over the threshold of the emergency room, your little body jumping as if shocked, bump-bump, and Jimmy suddenly felt red-hot inside me, burning away everything.
And da great thing about da Vatican is that tourists can have a fag with their pint - sure ye would hardly notice it with all the oul incense burning away all over da shop.
If they want to ask something which has been burning away inside them for maybe six months then they get a chance to unload a big sack of spuds over your head.
Young people, Ayers maintains, could only take so much of it in: the image of "a slim peasant boy, his torso pocked with tiny razor cuts from knees to shoulders, a thousand little rivulets of blood sucking his life out of him;" or the more famous image of the eleven year old girl running naked down the road, her face contorted in terror, the napalm still clinging to her, burning away at her flesh.
Other ways to reduce the effects of the smoke include avoiding burning on weekends; keeping piles dry and covered until ready to burn; chipping the material to be burned; and burning away from other homes.
I went to the ladies and saw my knickers were burning away.
Six firefighters wearing breathing apparatus carried out a full search under difficult conditions with the added hazard of a staircase and floors burning away.