- The definition of steam is using water vapor.
An example of steam used as an adjective is in the phrase "steam engine," which means an engine that runs on water vapor.
- Steam is a vapor, particularly water heated to the boiling point and then converted to a vapor or gas.
An example of steam is vapor coming out of a hot pot of soup.
- Steam is defined as to give off a vapor or to expose to a vapor.
An example of to steam is to cook broccoli in a covered pot with a little water.
- Obsolete a vapor, fume, or exhalation
- water as converted into an invisible vapor or gas by being heated to the boiling point; vaporized water: it is used for heating, cooking, cleaning, and, under pressure, as a source of power
- the power supplied by steam under pressure
- Informal driving force; vigor; energy
- condensed water vapor, seen as the mist condensed on windows or in the air above boiling water
Origin of steamMiddle English steme ; from Old English steam, akin to Dutch stoom, West Frisian steam
- using steam; heated, operated, propelled, etc. by steam
- containing or conducting steam: a steam pipe
- treated with, or exposed to the action of, steam
- to give off steam or a steamlike vapor, esp. condensed water vapor
- to rise or be given off as steam
- to become covered with condensed steam: usually with up: when the hot bath was drawn, the bathroom mirror steamed up
- to generate steam
- to move or travel by or as if by steam power
- Informal to seethe with anger, vexation, etc.; fume
- to treat with, or expose to the action of, steam; cook, soften, remove, open, etc. by using steam
- to give off (vapor) or emit as steam
let off steamor blow off steam
under one's own steam
- a. The vapor phase of water.b. A mist of cooling water vapor.
- a. Pressurized water vapor used for heating, cooking, or to provide mechanical power.b. The power produced by a machine using pressurized water vapor: an engine at full steam.c. Steam heating.
- Power; energy: The fundraising effort ran out of steam.
verbsteamed, steam·ing, steams
- To produce or emit steam: The kettle is steaming. Let's make tea.
- To become or rise up as steam: The rain steamed off the hot pavement.
- To become misted or covered with steam: The bathroom mirror steamed over.
- To move by means of steam power.
- Informal To become very angry; fume.
- To expose to steam, as in cooking.
- To cover or mist with steam: The windows are steamed up.
- Informal To make angry: His laziness really steams me.
Origin of steamMiddle English steme, from Old English stēam.
- The vapor formed when water changes from liquid phase to gas phase.
- Pressurized water vapour used for heating, cooking, or to provide mechanical energy.
- (figuratively) Internal energy for motive power.
- After three weeks in bed he was finally able to sit up under his own steam.
- (figuratively) Pent-up anger.
- Dad had to go outside to blow off some steam.
- A steam-powered vehicle.
- Travel by means of a steam-powered vehicle.
(third-person singular simple present steams, present participle steaming, simple past and past participle steamed)
- (cooking) To cook with steam.
- To expose to the action of steam; to apply steam to for softening, dressing, or preparing.
- to steam wood or cloth
- (intransitive) To produce or vent steam.
- (intransitive) To rise in vapour; to issue, or pass off, as vapour.
- (intransitive, figuratively) To become angry; to fume; to be incensed.
- (figuratively) To make angry.
- It really steams me to see her treat him like that.
- (intransitive) To be covered with condensed water vapor.
- With all the heavy breathing going on the windows were quickly steamed in the car.
- (intransitive) To travel by means of steam power.
- We steamed around the Mediterranean.
- (figuratively or literally) To move with great or excessive purposefulness.
- If he heard of anyone picking the fruit he would steam off and lecture them.
- Old-fashioned; from before the digital age.
From Middle English steem, stem, from Old English stēam (“steam, hot exhalation, hot breath; that which emits vapour; blood”), from Proto-Germanic *staumaz (“steam, vapour, breath”), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰew- (“to whirl, waft, stink, shake; steam, haze, smoke”). Cognate with Scots stem, steam (“steam”), West Frisian steam (“steam, vapour”), Dutch stoom (“steam, vapour”), Low German stom (“steam”), Swedish dialectal stimma (“steam, fog”), Latin fūmus (“smoke, steam”).