heat

verb
\ ˈhēt How to pronounce heat (audio) \
heated; heating; heats

Definition of heat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to become warm or hot water heating in a kettle
2 : to start to spoil from heat

transitive verb

1 : to make warm or hot heat a can of soup heat the oven to 350 degrees
2 : excite were heated by his stirring words

heat

noun

Definition of heat (Entry 2 of 2)

1a(1) : a condition of being hot : warmth snow melting in the heat of the sun
(2) : a marked or notable degree of hotness The heat was intense.
b : pathological excessive bodily temperature the heat of the fever
c : a hot place or situation get out of the heat
d(1) : a period of heat an unbroken heat
(2) : a single complete operation of making something warm or hot also : the quantity of material so heated
e(1) physics : added energy that causes substances to rise in temperature, fuse, evaporate, expand, or undergo any of various other related changes, that flows to a body by contact with or radiation from bodies at higher temperatures, and that can be produced in a body (as by compression)
(2) physics : the energy associated with the random motions of the molecules, atoms, or smaller structural units of which matter is composed
f : appearance, condition, or color of something as indicating its temperature when the rod is at the proper welding heat
2a : intensity of feeling or reaction : passion answered with considerable heat
b : the height or stress of an action or condition in the heat of battle
c : sexual excitement especially in a female mammal like an animal in heat specifically : estrus
3 : a single continuous effort: such as
a : a single round of a contest (such as a race) having two or more rounds for each contestant won two heats out of three
b : one of several preliminary contests held to eliminate less competent contenders won the second heat but finished third in the final race
4 : pungency of flavor Add some cayenne pepper for extra heat.
5a slang
(1) : the intensification of law-enforcement activity or investigation waited until the heat was off
(2) : police
b : pressure, coercion turn up the heat on your congressperson
c : abuse, criticism took heat for her mistakes
6 baseball : smoke sense 8 throwing some heat
7 slang : gun sense 1b was packing heat

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from heat

Verb

heatable \ ˈhē-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce heat (audio) \ adjective

Noun

heatless \ ˈhēt-​ləs How to pronounce heat (audio) \ adjective
heatproof \ ˈhēt-​ˌprüf How to pronounce heat (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for heat

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Noun

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of heat in a Sentence

Verb I heated the vegetables in the microwave. They heat their house with a wood stove. Noun The sun's heat melted the snow. the intense heat of a fire She applied heat to the sore muscles in her leg. a period of high heat and humidity The crops were damaged by drought and extreme heat. Cook the milk over low heat. Remove the pan from the heat.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The low sea ice extent was partly driven by unusually warm air temperatures that are becoming less and less unusual as human greenhouse gas emissions continue to heat up the planet. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, "Largest Arctic Expedition Ever Comes to a Close," 15 Oct. 2020 The food delivery market is fiercely competitive and may only continue to heat up as the pandemic continues. Sara Ashley O'brien, CNN, "DoorDash is now valued at nearly $16 billion," 18 June 2020 This comes as rumors of a Braddison reconciliation continue to heat up. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Thomas Petrou Covered Addison Rae’s Car with Pictures of Her and Bryce Hall and Her Reaction Is So Cute," 15 June 2020 Placing your hand on the hob will not heat up your hand to any noticeable extent. Kenneth Mcleod, The Conversation, "Magnetic induction cooking can cut your kitchen’s carbon footprint," 23 Dec. 2020 Here are Good Housekeeping's top tricks for using your Dutch oven: For a deep sear, heat the pot first, then add a little bit of oil before adding in the meat right away. Nicole Papantoniou, Good Housekeeping, "What Is a Dutch Oven — and How Do You Use It?," 22 Dec. 2020 In a deep pan, heat the oil to 180°C then fry the scotch eggs in the oil turning frequently for 3 minutes. Richard Vines, Bloomberg.com, "Scotch Eggs Are U.K’s Hottest Snack: Here’s How to Make Them," 19 Dec. 2020 When ready to bake the cookies, heat the oven to 350 degrees. Arkansas Democrat-gazette, Arkansas Online, "12 Christmas cookie recipes to spice up your holiday repertoire," 17 Dec. 2020 In a small saucepan, heat the half and half, peppermint extract and vanilla extract on medium-low for 15 minutes. Rebecca White, Dallas News, "Peppermint ice cream recipe with 5 simple ingredients," 15 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Roasting vegetables just means cooking them at high heat for a fairly short amount of time. Darlene Zimmerman, Detroit Free Press, "Quick and easy roasting brings out the flavor in vegetables," 10 Jan. 2021 The one to beat but could get a nice price in competitive heat. Michael Beychok, NOLA.com, "Check out Chok's Choices for Sunday's Fair Grounds races," 9 Jan. 2021 The silicone heat-resistant tray can accommodate still-hot curling wands, straight irons and more. Courtney Thompson, CNN Underscored, "35 products to organize every corner of your home," 5 Jan. 2021 Internal combustion engines will need to become a thing of the past, as will the way most of us currently cool and heat homes and cook dinner. Kate Aronoff, The New Republic, "The Bungled Vaccine Rollout Is a Bad Omen," 4 Jan. 2021 The brakes never seemed fazed by having to turn the energy of the heavy Chiron at 200-plus-mph into heat. Tony Quiroga, Car and Driver, "Bugatti Chiron Is Now the Quickest Car We've Ever Tested," 1 Jan. 2021 And Bloomberg CityLab and NexusMedia revealed that heat in Chicago is one of many things targeting Black populations. Mark Olalde, USA TODAY, "Climate Point: Congress battles over relief checks while oil companies are bailed out," 31 Dec. 2020 Thanks to increasing levels of heat-absorbing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, global average temperatures last year were 1.15°C over the pre-industrial era. Ciara Nugent, Time, "2020 Was a Year of Climate Extremes. What Can We Expect in 2021?," 31 Dec. 2020 Dimitry and Marina recalled the many frigid nights in their native Siberia when the power failed and their mother turned even the loss of lights and heat into a special moment. Sharon Grigsby, Dallas News, "‘People were prepared to follow her forever’: Dallas principal’s extraordinary life, not her death, deserves notice," 31 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'heat.' 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

Verb

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

Noun

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

History and Etymology for heat

Verb

Middle English heten, going back to Old English hǣtan, going back to Germanic *haitjan- (whence also Middle Dutch hēten "to make warm," Old High German heizen, Old Norse heita "to make hot, brew"), derivative of *haita- "having a high temperature, burning" — more at hot entry 1

Noun

Middle English hete, going back to Old English hǣtu, going back to Germanic *haitīn- (whence also Old Frisian hēte "high temperature, heat," Old High German heizi), noun derivative from *haita- "having a high temperature, burning" — more at hot entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about heat

Time Traveler for heat

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for heat

Last Updated

15 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Heat.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/heat. Accessed 23 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for heat

heat

verb
How to pronounce heat (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of heat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cause (something) to become warm or hot

heat

noun

English Language Learners Definition of heat (Entry 2 of 2)

: energy that causes things to become warmer
: hot weather or temperatures
: the level of temperature that is used to cook something

heat

verb
\ ˈhēt How to pronounce heat (audio) \
heated; heating

Kids Definition of heat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make or become warm or hot

heat

noun

Kids Definition of heat (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a condition of being hot : warmth We enjoyed the heat of the fire.
2 : hot weather heat and humidity
3 : a form of energy that causes an object to rise in temperature
4 : strength of feeling or force of action In the heat of anger, I said some cruel things.
5 : a single race in a contest that includes two or more races
\ ˈhēt How to pronounce heat (audio) \

Medical Definition of heat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to become warm or hot

transitive verb

: to make warm or hot

heat

noun

Medical Definition of heat (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the state of a body or of matter that is perceived as opposed to cold and is characterized by elevation of temperature : a condition of being hot especially : a marked or notable degree of this state : high temperature
b(1) : a feverish state of the body : pathological excessive bodily temperature (as from inflammation) knew the throbbing heat of an abscess the heat of the fever
(2) : a warm flushed condition of the body (as after exercise) : a sensation produced by or like that produced by contact with or approach to heated matter
c(1) : added energy that causes substances to rise in temperature, fuse, evaporate, expand, or undergo any of various other related changes, that flows to a body by contact with or radiation from bodies at higher temperatures, and that can be produced in a body (as by compression)
(2) : the energy associated with the random motions of the molecules, atoms, or smaller structural units of which matter is composed
2 : sexual excitement especially in a female mammal specifically : estrus

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on heat

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Slippery Words Quiz—Changing with the Times

  • ducreux self portrait yawning
  • What is an earlier meaning of nice?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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