hot·​house | \ ˈhät-ˌhau̇s How to pronounce hothouse (audio) \

Definition of hothouse

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a greenhouse maintained at a high temperature especially for the culture of tropical plants
3 obsolete : brothel



Definition of hothouse (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : grown in a hothouse
2 : suggestive of growth and development in a hothouse a hothouse existence also : suggesting a hothouse a hothouse atmosphere

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Synonyms for hothouse

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of hothouse in a Sentence

Noun grows tomatoes in his hothouse all winter long an urban enclave of bohemians that acquired a reputation for being a hothouse of creativity
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Also crucial is Murphy's particular knack for using music and color to convey the hothouse longings of her characters; heady metaphors served in the atonal jangle of post punk or the throbbing kaleidoscope of strobe lights at a house party. Leah Greenblatt,, "Australian indie Babyteeth breathes life into terminal illness and teen romance: Review," 17 June 2020 My tomato was the size of a thumbnail, smelled like a whole hothouse, and burned my lips with the first bite. Sheyna Gifford, Time, "Ten Tips From ‘Mars’ for Quarantined Earthlings," 2 Apr. 2020 The glass walls resulted in spectacular heating bills in the winter and hothouse temperatures in the summer—there were only two small openable windows. Witold Rybczynski, WSJ, "‘Broken Glass’ Review: Letting the Outside In," 20 Mar. 2020 On Thursday, the National Symphony Orchestra returned to the Kennedy Center with a bouquet of hothouse flowers: bold colors, assiduously attended. Matthew Guerrieri, Washington Post, "At the NSO, a vibrant program under vigorous control," 17 Jan. 2020 Within social media’s digital hothouses, the conditions that lead young people, especially men, to trolling activity and overall Posting Brain hold sway. Libby Watson, The New Republic, "In Defense of Rude Politics," 10 Mar. 2020 The label is a hothouse for talent, with the likes of Lane 8, Luttrell, Yotto and many more effectively launching their careers through Anjunadeep. Annabel Ross, Billboard, "How Anjunadeep Became One of Dance Music's Ultimate Tastemaker Labels With the Most 'Down to Earth' Fans," 6 Feb. 2020 Into the hothouse of Lisbon came those in search of a different kind of information, in the form of the printed word. Time, "Why the U.S. Sent Librarians Undercover to Gather Intelligence During World War II," 3 Jan. 2020 Again, Hendrickson seeks an expert opinion, trying out his hothouse theory on a Wright scholar. Christopher Benfey, Harper's magazine, "Burning Down the House," 25 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Fracas, fittingly beloved by personality-plus women such as Madonna, Martha Stewart, and Isabella Blow, dials the heady, hothouse opulence of tuberose up to 11 with the addition of jasmine, tonka bean, and musk. April Long, Town & Country, "Is Tuberose the Sexiest Fragrance Note?," 13 Sep. 2019 These fragile and artificial economies require hothouse conditions that a weakened OPEC can no longer provide. Walter Russell Mead, WSJ, "Fracking Our Way to Mideast Peace," 11 Dec. 2017

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


1556, in the meaning defined at sense 3


1771, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for hothouse

Time Traveler

The first known use of hothouse was in 1556

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Statistics for hothouse

Last Updated

25 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Hothouse.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for hothouse


How to pronounce hothouse (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of hothouse

: a heated building used for growing plants


hot·​house | \ ˈhät-ˌhau̇s How to pronounce hothouse (audio) \

Kids Definition of hothouse

: a heated building enclosed by glass for growing plants

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More from Merriam-Webster on hothouse

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hothouse

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hothouse

Spanish Central: Translation of hothouse

Nglish: Translation of hothouse for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about hothouse

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