A vessel or melting pot, composed of some very refractory substance, as clay, graphite, platinum, and used for melting and calcining substances which require a strong degree of heat, as metals, ores, etc.
A hollow place at the bottom of a furnace, to receive the melted metal.
A test of the most decisive kind; a severe trial; as, the crucible of affliction.
If American literature has a few heroes, Miller is one of them. He refused to name names at the McCarthy hearings, and his play 'The Crucible' analysed the hearings in the context of a previous American mass psychosis, the Salem witch trials. Jane Smiley
Yale is a crucible in American life for the accommodation of intellectual achievement, of wisdom, of refinement, with the democratic ideals of openness, of social justice and of equal opportunity. Benno C. Schmidt, Jr.