- Thaw is defined as to rise in temperature above the freezing point, or to become unfrozen.
An example of thaw is to defrost meat.
Frozen chicken set out to thaw.
- to become liquid or semiliquid; melt: said of ice, snow, etc.
- to pass to an unfrozen state: said of frozen foods
- to have its contents melt: underground water pipes thaw in the spring
- to rise in temperature above the freezing point, so that snow, etc. melts: said of weather conditions, with impersonal it[it will thaw tomorrow]
- to get rid of the chill, stiffness, etc. resulting from extreme cold: often with out
- to lose coldness or reserve of manner
Origin of thawMiddle English thawen ; from Old English thawian, akin to Dutch dooien, German (ver)dauen, to digest ; from Indo-European base an unverified form tā-, to melt, dissolve, flow from source Classical Latin tabere, to melt, vanish
- the act of thawing
- a spell of weather warm enough to allow thawing
- a becoming less reserved in manner
verbthawed, thaw·ing, thaws
- To change from a frozen solid to a liquid by gradual warming.
- To lose stiffness, numbness, or impermeability by being warmed: left the frozen turkey out until it thawed; thawed out by sitting next to the stove.
- To become warm enough for snow and ice to melt.
- To become less formal, aloof, or reserved.
- The process of thawing.
- A period of warm weather during which ice and snow melt.
- A relaxation of reserve, restraints, or tensions.
Origin of thawMiddle English thawen, from Old English thawian.
(third-person singular simple present thaws, present participle thawing, simple past and past participle thawed)
- (intransitive) To melt, dissolve, or become fluid; to soften; — said of that which is frozen; as, the ice thaws. Specifically by gradual warming
- (intransitive) To become so warm as to melt ice and snow; — said in reference to the weather, and used impersonally.
- (intransitive, figuratively) To grow gentle or genial.
- To cause frozen things (such as earth, snow, ice) to melt, soften, or dissolve. Specifically by gradual warming.
- The melting of ice, snow, or other congealed matter; the resolution of ice, or the like, into the state of a fluid; liquefaction by heat of anything congealed by frost
- a warmth of weather sufficient to melt that which is congealed. —Dryden.
From Middle English thowen, thawen, from Old English þāwian (“to thaw”), from Proto-Germanic *þawōną, *þawjaną (“to thaw, melt”), from Proto-Indo-European *tāw- (“to melt”). Cognate with Scots thow (“to thaw”), West Frisian teie (“to thaw, melt”), Dutch dooien (“to thaw”), German tauen (“to thaw”), Swedish töa (“to thaw”), Icelandic þeyja (“to thaw”), Latin tābēs (“melting, wasting away”) and Albanian thaj (“to dry (up), to thaw”), Polish tajać (“to thaw”).