heat wave


Definition of heat wave

: a period of unusually hot weather

Examples of heat wave in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The most notorious heat wave in Chicago was the deadly July 1995 stretch that killed more than 700 area residents. Michael Phillips, chicagotribune.com, "‘Cooked: Survival by ZIP Code’ review: A withering look at the 1995 Chicago heat wave," 10 July 2019 The backdrop to the event: flooding in Washington, DC, a historic heat wave in Alaska, and a $19 billion disaster aid package passed by Congress last month for hurricane, wildfire, tornado, and storm relief around the country. Tara Golshan, Vox, "Why there’s a movement to declare climate change a national emergency," 9 July 2019 The final stages of this World Cup are being played in an unprecedented heat wave in France. Andrew Keh, New York Times, "Short One Star, U.S. Women Just Called for Another," 3 July 2019 California experienced a record breaking heat wave in June, with temperatures in the north end of the state reaching triple digits. Cnn.com Wire Service, The Mercury News, "It’s so hot in parts of Northern California that mussels are cooking in their shells," 2 July 2019 Scientists say measurements show heat waves in Europe are becoming more frequent. Sylvie Corbet, BostonGlobe.com, "Intense heat wave to strike Paris, shimmer across Europe," 24 June 2019 Chennai, the sixth-largest city in India is running out of water for its nearly 4.6 million residents as four of the city’s reservoirs are nearly dry due to a heat wave and drought. Jasmine Aguilera, Time, "This Indian City Is Running Out of Water, Impacting 4.6 Million People," 20 June 2019 Record heat wave triggers wildfires and power outages in multiple places across Northern California, foreshadowing summer to come, but none explode into huge blazes with fatalities or major structure losses. Mercury News Staff, The Mercury News, "Latest line: Young families a winner, Cindy Chavez a loser," 16 June 2019 As Arctic ice vanishes, many scientists expect the steady stream of air that pushes weather across the Northern Hemisphere to wobble, producing periods of punishing cold, brutal heat waves and disastrous floods. Anchorage Daily News, "For the biggest Arctic expedition ever, scientists will trap themselves in sea ice," 13 June 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of heat wave

1893, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about heat wave

Dictionary Entries near heat wave


heat unit

heat up

heat wave




Statistics for heat wave

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for heat wave

The first known use of heat wave was in 1893

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for heat wave

heat wave


English Language Learners Definition of heat wave

: a period of unusually hot weather

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on heat wave

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with heat wave

Spanish Central: Translation of heat wave

Britannica English: Translation of heat wave for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about heat wave

Comments on heat wave

What made you want to look up heat wave? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


an act or instance of editing or removing

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What's that Smell?! Quiz

  • wide eyed dog smelling rose
  • Someone who is hircine smells like a:
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!