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1. a sudden fear or distressing suspense caused by an awareness of danger; apprehension; fright.
2. any sound, outcry, or information intended to warn of approaching danger: Paul Revere raced through the countryside raising the alarm that the British were coming.
3. an automatic device that serves to call attention, to rouse from sleep, or to warn of fire, smoke, an intruder, etc.
4. a warning sound; signal for attention.
5. Animal Behav.any sound, outcry, chemical discharge, action, or other signal that functions to draw attention to a potential predator.
6. Fencing.an appeal or a challenge made by a step or stamp on the ground with the advancing foot.
7. Archaic.a call to arms.
1. to make fearful or apprehensive; distress.
2. to warn of danger; rouse to vigilance and swift measures for safety.
3. to fit or equip with an alarm or alarms, as for fire, smoke, or robbery: to alarm one's house and garage.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.