Meaning of STEEL in English


I. ˈstēl, esp before pause or consonant -ēəl noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English stele, stel, from Old English stēle, stȳle; akin to Old High German stahal steel, Old Norse stāl, Sanskrit stakati he resists

1. : commercial iron that contains carbon in any amount up to about 1.7 percent as an essential alloying constituent, is malleable when under suitable conditions, is distinguished from cast iron by its malleability and lower carbon content and when of low carbon content from wrought iron by its freedom from slag and by its method of manufacture, and is now usually produced by refining molten pig iron in a bath that remains completely molten throughout the process — see alloy steel , bessemer steel , carbon steel , electric steel , mild steel , stainless steel ; bessemer process , open-hearth process


a. : steel as a material for manufactured articles

b. : articles characteristically made of steel

c. : the steel part of an article (as the blade of a knife)

3. : an instrument or implement of or characteristically of steel: as


(1) : weapon ; especially : one for thrusting or cutting — see cold steel

(2) : weapons or armaments of steel

invaders were driven back by steel

evils, for which the only remedy is blood and steel — John Buchan

b. : an instrument for sharpening knives ; especially : a fluted round rod fitted with a handle and used for this purpose

butcher's steel

c. : a piece of steel for striking sparks from flint

d. : rail 3a,3b(3)

lay steel

end of steel

e. : a strip of steel used (as in corsets) for stiffening — compare bone 5b

4. : a steellike quality

lacked the steel a conquistador must have — Bernard De Voto

the cold steel of the intellect — Edward Sapir

5. : steel gray


a. : the steel manufacturing industry : steel manufacturing companies

the growth of steel since the end of the war — Howard Marshall

Big Steel

b. steels plural : stocks or bonds of steel companies

II. transitive verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle English stelen, from stele steel


a. : to overlay, point, or edge with steel

steel a razor

steel an ax

specifically : to provide (an electrotype) with a nickel or iron-nickel compound face

b. : case harden


a. : to cause to resemble steel (as in looks or hardness)

b. : to make hard or unbending : fill with strong resolution, unyielding determination, or stark insensibility

was sick of the bareness and privation … but was steeling himself to hold out — Theodore Dreiser

charge high rates and steel their hearts against all compassion — G.G.Coulton

strive rather to steel them in a new and finer way — E.A.Mowrer

Synonyms: see encourage

III. adjective

Etymology: steel (I)

1. : made of steel

steel plate

steel castings

steel pen

2. : of or relating to the production of steel

the steel industry

steel furnace

3. : resembling steel in one or more characteristics

steel nerves

steel courage

— often used in combination

steel -jawed

steel -willed

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.