\ ˈkül How to pronounce cool (audio) \

Definition of cool

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : moderately cold : lacking in warmth The plant grows best in cool climates.
2a : marked by steady dispassionate calmness and self-control a cool and calculating businessperson
b : lacking ardor or friendliness a cool impersonal manner
c of jazz : marked by restrained emotion and the frequent use of counterpoint
d : free from tensions or violence We used to fight, but we're cool now.
3 used as an intensivea cool million dollars
4 : marked by deliberate effrontery or lack of due respect or discretion a cool reply
5 : facilitating or suggesting relief from heat a cool dress
6a of a color : producing an impression of being cool specifically : of a hue in the range violet through blue to green
b of a musical tone : relatively lacking in timbre or resonance (see resonance sense 2a)
7 informal
a : very good : excellent That was a really cool movie. also : all right Is getting together Friday night cool with you?
b : fashionable, hip … not happy with the new shoes … because they were not "cool."— Celestine Sibley


cooled; cooling; cools

Definition of cool (Entry 2 of 4)

intransitive verb

1 : to become cool : lose heat or warmth placed the pie in the window to cool sometimes used with off or down
2 : to lose ardor or passion His anger cooled.

transitive verb

1 : to make cool : impart a feeling of coolness to cooled the room with a fan often used with off or downA swim cooled us off a little.
2a : to moderate the heat, excitement, or force of : calm cooled her growing anger
b : to slow or lessen the growth or activity of usually used with off or downwants to cool off the economy without freezing itNewsweek
cool it
: to calm down : go easy The word went out to the young to cool it.— W. M. Young
cool one's heels
: to wait or be kept waiting for a long time especially from or as if from disdain or discourtesy



Definition of cool (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : a cool time, place, or situation the cool of the evening
2a : absence of excitement or emotional involvement : detachment … must surrender his fine cool and enter the closed crazy world of suicide …— Wilfrid Sheed
b : poise, composure The player lost his cool and began yelling at the referee.



Definition of cool (Entry 4 of 4)

: in a casual and nonchalant manner play it cool

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Other Words from cool


coolish \ ˈkü-​lish How to pronounce coolish (audio) \ adjective
coolly or less commonly cooly \ ˈkü(l)-​lē How to pronounce cooly (audio) \ adverb
coolness \ ˈkül-​nəs How to pronounce coolness (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for cool


cool, composed, collected, unruffled, imperturbable, nonchalant mean free from agitation or excitement. cool may imply calmness, deliberateness, or dispassionateness. kept a cool head composed implies freedom from agitation as a result of self-discipline or a sedate disposition. the composed pianist gave a flawless concert collected implies a concentration of mind that eliminates distractions especially in moments of crisis. the nurse stayed calm and collected unruffled suggests apparent serenity and poise in the face of setbacks or in the midst of excitement. harried but unruffled imperturbable implies coolness or assurance even under severe provocation. the speaker remained imperturbable despite the heckling nonchalant stresses an easy coolness of manner or casualness that suggests indifference or unconcern. a nonchalant driver

Examples of cool in a Sentence

Adjective The weather is cool today. The surface is cool to the touch. The plant grows best in cool climates. I'm feeling a little cool. We changed into some cooler clothes. She remained calm, cool, and collected. Verb The fan cools the engine. the cooling effect of the breeze Allow the cake to cool before slicing. the cooling of the ocean waters I took a break from the discussion to allow my anger to cool. His interest in her has cooled somewhat. Noun the judge's customary cool stood him in good stead during the sensational trial I envy you your cool. Adverb Here comes Mom. Act cool and she won't suspect a thing.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Sunny, cool — and very dry — weather is taking hold in the Bay Area this weekend and during the week, with not a drop of precipitation in the offing. Steve Rubenstein, SFChronicle.com, "Sunny and dry, with an emphasis on dry," 28 Nov. 2020 Cloudy and cool with a 70% chance showers, mainly from mid afternoon on. Dallas News, "Chilly with showers Saturday," 27 Nov. 2020 Very cool to find out that five NBA players flew to Rome to have an unprecedented meeting with Pope Francis. Los Angeles Times, "Letters: Playing college football and basketball seasons during pandemic is foolish," 27 Nov. 2020 Alternatively cool in the freezer to use on hot days or for headaches and bumps. Fiona Tapp, CNN Underscored, "Our favorite picks from the Amazon Canada holiday gift guide," 24 Nov. 2020 Known for keeping her cool, one of the few people to ruffle her has been Trump. Washington Post, "Who is Janet Yellen, Biden’s pioneering pick to lead the Treasury amidst a deep crisis?," 24 Nov. 2020 These once cool, tapering and artistic hands have been initiated into the more brutal mysteries of Ju-Jitsu. Kurt Vonnegut, The New Yorker, "Letters to Woofy," 23 Nov. 2020 These two tops from Element Outdoors are stretchy, lightweight, and cool to the touch, with wicking fabric to beat perspiration and two types of Polygiene to combat odor. Natalie Krebs, Outdoor Life, "The Ultimate Hunting Gift Guide for Women," 18 Nov. 2020 Jazz musician Lester Young coined this usage of cool, unrelated to temperature, in the late 1930s. Marc Bain, Quartz, "What “cool” originally sounded like," 15 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb One of the drawbacks of outdoor dining is the speed at which your meal can cool down. Tom Sietsema, Washington Post, "Four ways to bring self-care to your holiday dining," 27 Nov. 2020 Remove from heat and gradually cool down by whisking. Mary Grace Granados, Dallas News, "Try these Thanksgiving recipes from Colleyville restaurants," 19 Nov. 2020 In the heat of summer, there may be other ways to cool down, says Ollie Jay, a thermal physiologist at the University of Sydney. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "Heat is killing more people than ever. Scientists are looking for ways to lower the risk," 12 Nov. 2020 However, over the weekend and into next week, temperatures are expected to cool down. Brooke Newman, The Arizona Republic, "Triple-digit high temperature on Friday could tie 1991 record for Phoenix; cooldown coming," 16 Oct. 2020 Avid runners have likely never stopped hitting the trails for their daily jogs, but the rest of us have been waiting for temperatures to cool down. Micolette Davis, Houston Chronicle, "These are the best men's and women's running shoes under $50 at Academy," 6 Oct. 2020 Listening also allows you, and the other person, to cool down. Nicole Pajer, New York Times, "How to Have a Disagreement Like an Adult, According to Deepak Chopra," 30 Sep. 2020 In normal times, when prices rise, the Fed jumps in and tries to cool the economy down by raising interest rates. Bernhard Warner, Fortune, "Investors look to buck a four-week losing streak, sending global stocks higher," 28 Sep. 2020 The Dyson Pure Cool DP04 boasts Amazon Alexa compatibility, can be controlled using the Dyson Link app on your smartphone and can help cool your room down. NBC News, "Dyson air purifier recommendations and shopping guide 2020," 28 Sep. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun There are few tools more useful in the tradition of quarterback mythmaking — that act of casting a passer as some type of John Wayne-esque alpha male who keeps his cool when the stakes are highest — than the game-winning drive. Ben Goessling, Star Tribune, "While Mahomes and Rodgers rallied, Kirk Cousins misses a chance for a clutch Vikings moment," 23 Nov. 2020 But after that brief cool-down, temperatures will return to 70 for Thanksgiving Day. Dallas News, "Several rain chances in the days to come," 22 Nov. 2020 Eric Church was the picture of cool at the 2020 CMA Awards on Wednesday (Nov. 11), which was filmed live in front of an audience. Anna Chan, Billboard, "Eric Church Offers a 'Hell of a View' at the 2020 CMA Awards," 11 Nov. 2020 All praised Boutros for doing a good job during a year of pandemic and unusual staff turnover, and all complimented him for keeping his cool during the barrage of thinly veiled insults. Bill Laitner, Detroit Free Press, "Birmingham mayor breaks 3-3 tie by voting to reappoint himself as mayor," 10 Nov. 2020 Highlights will include a Zumba warm-up, survivor celebration, photo contest, a yoga cool-down by the Saints’ own yoga instructor, and a dance performance by Mystic Krewe of Femme Fatale. Staff Reports, NOLA.com, "Vintage airplanes at New Orleans Lakefront Airport, and more metro community news," 4 Nov. 2020 The Los Angeles region will be warm, dry and breezy next week, with a significant cool-down next weekend, the National Weather Service said. Los Angeles Times, "It will feel like fall ‘quite suddenly’ next weekend in the L.A. region. Will there be rain?," 31 Oct. 2020 Contrasting with the Ace's urban cool is the tranquil design of the year-old Aman Kyoto, surrounded by momiji maple trees, just outside the city. Cnt Editors, Condé Nast Traveler, "14 Reasons We Can't Wait to Travel in 2021," 17 Nov. 2020 Even so, the deep-freeze suitcases only hold their cool for 10 days. Stephen Gandel, CBS News, "Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine distribution will be a "logistical nightmare"," 17 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb The crash action takes place at the unfathomably cool-sounding Rocket Sled Track at Sandia National Laboratory. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "A Semi Truck Crashed Into a U.S. Nuclear Weapons Transporter," 19 Nov. 2020 With emotions running high for Orlando and Atlanta, Pareja said the key for the Lions is to take control of the game early and remain cool-headed through the final minutes. Julia Poe, orlandosentinel.com, "Orlando City chases win over Atlanta United, bump in standings," 27 Oct. 2020 Microsoft also offered a minor update of its cool-looking but poorly reviewed Surface X tablet, which runs Windows on a custom ARM chip instead of a typical Intel processor. Aaron Pressman, Fortune, "Microsoft offers cheapest Surface laptop yet to take on Chromebooks," 1 Oct. 2020 This one from Aerie makes a great gift, with its pretty lace material, eight color options and cool-looking strappy back. Sara Hendricks, USA TODAY, "35 gifts teenage girls actually want in 2020," 25 Sep. 2020 For all the media coverage of this cool-sounding partnership, answers are fuzzy on what the affects might be for Cowboys fans and Whataburger fans. Sarah Blaskovich, Dallas News, "Whataburger is the official burger of the Dallas Cowboys — but they’re not selling Whataburger at Cowboys games," 10 Sep. 2020 An aerospace engineer in Clear Lake, Texas, Mahler is used to putting puzzle pieces together and taking a calm, cool-headed approach to problems. Megan E. Doherty, Smithsonian Magazine, "What Happens When Children’s Covid-19 Symptoms Won’t Go Away," 11 Sep. 2020 Former Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner and her husband, Joe Jonas, were spotted yesterday wearing cool-toned matching duds while hanging out in a park with family. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, "Sophie Turner Wraps Up in Plaid for a Park Date with Joe Jonas," 17 July 2020 But coordinated, cool-headed, honest messaging from government officials and public-health experts would have gone a long way toward allaying undue anxiety. Jacob Stern, The Atlantic, "This Is Not a Normal Mental-Health Disaster," 7 July 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cool.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cool


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1968, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cool


Middle English col, going back to Old English cōl, going back to West Germanic *kōlu- (whence also Middle Dutch coele "moderately cold" and, from a variant *kōlja-, Old High German kuoli), lengthened-grade derivative from the base of *kalan- "to be cold" — more at cold entry 1


Middle English colen, going back to Old English cōlian, verbal derivative from Germanic *kōl- cool entry 1 (whence also Old Saxon colon "to become cool," Old High German kuolēn)


Middle English cole, derivative of col cool entry 1


derivative of cool entry 1

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Time Traveler for cool

Time Traveler

The first known use of cool was before the 12th century

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Statistics for cool

Last Updated

1 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Cool.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cool. Accessed 5 Dec. 2020.

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More Definitions for cool

How to pronounce cool (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of cool

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: somewhat cold : not warm or hot
: made of a light, thin material that helps you stay cool
: able to think and act in a calm way : not affected by strong feelings



English Language Learners Definition of cool (Entry 2 of 3)

: to make (someone or something) cool
: to become cool : to lose heat or warmth
: to become less strong or intense especially in emotion



English Language Learners Definition of cool (Entry 3 of 3)

informal : in a calm manner : in a way that does not seem unusual or excited
\ ˈkül How to pronounce cool (audio) \
cooler; coolest

Kids Definition of cool

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : somewhat cold : not warm a cool day a cool room
2 : not letting or keeping in heat cool clothes
3 : calm entry 3 sense 2 She is cool in a crisis.
4 : not interested or friendly He was cool to my idea.
5 : fashionable, stylish, or attractive in a way that is widely approved of
6 : very good excellent

Other Words from cool

coolly adverb
coolness noun


cooled; cooling

Kids Definition of cool (Entry 2 of 3)

: to make or become less warm



Kids Definition of cool (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a time or place that is not warm the cool of the evening
2 : a calm state of mind Keep your cool.

Legal Definition of cool

: to lose passion : become calm sometimes used with off or down the time elapsing…is such that a reasonable man thus provoked would have cooled— W. R. LaFave and A. W. Scott, Jr.

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