Meaning of STEAM in English


I. ˈstēm noun

Etymology: Middle English stem, from Old English stēam; akin to Dutch stoom steam

Date: before 12th century

1. : a vapor arising from a heated substance


a. : the invisible vapor into which water is converted when heated to the boiling point

b. : the mist formed by the condensation on cooling of water vapor


a. : water vapor kept under pressure so as to supply energy for heating, cooking, or mechanical work ; also : the power so generated

b. : active force : power , momentum

got there under his own steam

sales began to pick up steam

also : normal force

at full steam

c. : pent-up emotional tension

needed to let off a little steam


a. : steamer 2a

b. : travel by or a trip in a steamer

II. verb

Date: 15th century

transitive verb

1. : to give out as fumes : exhale

2. : to apply steam to ; especially : to expose to the action of steam (as for softening or cooking)

intransitive verb

1. : to rise or pass off as vapor

2. : to give off steam or vapor


a. : to move or travel by the agency of steam

b. : to move or proceed with energy or force

4. : to be angry : boil

steam ing over the insult

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate English vocabulary.      Энциклопедический словарь английского языка Merriam Webster.