noun, often attributive
\ ˈīs How to pronounce ice (audio) \

Definition of ice

 (Entry 1 of 5)

1a : frozen water
b : a sheet or stretch of ice
2 : a substance resembling ice especially : the solid state of a substance usually found as a gas or liquid ammonia ice in the rings of Saturn
3 : a state of coldness (as from formality or reserve)
4a : a frozen dessert containing a flavoring (such as fruit juice) especially : one containing no milk or cream
b British : a serving of ice cream
5 slang : diamonds broadly : jewelry
6 : an undercover premium paid to a theater employee for choice theater tickets
on ice
1 : with every likelihood of being won or accomplished
2 : in reserve or safekeeping
on thin ice
: in a precarious or risky situation


iced; icing

Definition of ice (Entry 2 of 5)

transitive verb

1a : to coat with or convert into ice
b : to chill with ice
c : to supply with ice
2 : to cover with or as if with icing
3 : to put on ice
4 : secure sense 1b made two free throws … to ice the win— Jack McCallum
5 : to shoot (an ice hockey puck) the length of the rink and beyond the opponents' goal line
6 slang : kill sense 1a

intransitive verb

1 : to become ice-cold
2a : to become covered with ice often used with up or over
b : to have ice form inside
\ əs \

Definition of -ice (Entry 3 of 5)

: act service : quality justice : condition cowardice

Definition of Ice (Entry 4 of 5)


Definition of ICE (Entry 5 of 5)

1 Immigration and Customs Enforcement In March 2003, the Homeland Security Act set into motion what would be the single-largest government reorganization since the creation of the Department of Defense. One of the agencies in the new Department of Homeland Security was the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, now known as U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement or ICE. —
2 in case of emergency Enter an ICE (in case of emergency) listing in the address book of your cell phone. Place the ICE acronym next to a person who can assist emergency workers if any important medical decisions need to be made.— Andrew Weil
3 internal combustion engine
4 International Cultural Exchange

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Other Words from ice


iceless \ ˈīs-​ləs How to pronounce ICE (audio) \ adjective

Examples of ice in a Sentence

Noun The steps were coated with ice. Ice formed on the car's windows. The ice melted quickly in the hot sun. She skated out onto the ice. He almost fell through a hole in the ice. Fill the glass with ice. He gave her some ice for her birthday. Verb Ice the glasses before you fill them. with that win, the team has pretty much iced a spot in the play-offs
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Disney has used fiber optics to assist with simulating Elsa’s ice magic along with panoramic windows to display ocean views graced by the luminous Aurora Borealis. Richard Tribou,, "Disney Wish focus: A look at the restaurants coming to Disney Cruise Line ship," 3 May 2021 Everything else was given to the people straight up--no ice, no cola, no water. Arkansas Online, "Clear enough speech," 2 May 2021 The Golden Knights, stymied on 25 shots Friday night, came out flying up the ice on Saturday. Jose M. Romero, The Arizona Republic, "Coyotes rally in third period, but fall in overtime to Golden Knights," 1 May 2021 Reaching temperatures as low as around minus-300 degrees, cryotherapy is a fast and effective alternative to traditional ice baths. Carroll County Times,, "Restore Therapy Spa in Westminster hosting cryotherapy challenge," 1 May 2021 The right wing player was off the ice for over a year after suffering a concussion back in November 2019. Jen Juneau,, "NHL's Andrew Shaw, 29, Retiring at Urging of Doctors After Several Concussions," 26 Apr. 2021 Tom Brady and the Patriots inspired our last duck boat parade in February of 2019, but the music died in June of ’19 when Brad Marchand skated off the ice too soon at the end of period one of Game 7 against the Blues in the Garden., "April has been anything but cruel for the Bruins, Celtics, and Red Sox," 19 Apr. 2021 Weegar, who is listed as day to day, was not on the ice for the morning skate. Rick Menning,, "Frank Vatrano scores twice as Panthers beat Blue Jackets," 19 Apr. 2021 The guys with the hammers start going wild on the ice, and the Gold team is the first to get a shield. Sydney Bucksbaum,, "The Challenge: All Stars recap: Power trippin'," 16 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Baskets from Peavy, McCullar, and Edwards extended the lead up to 13, 58-45, to ice the 12-point victory. Dallas News, "3 takeaways from Texas Tech’s first-round win: Defense the key to victory for the Red Raiders," 19 Mar. 2021 Jalen Buckley followed Weerts’ blocks, however, to pick up the Bulldogs’ only first down of the second half to ice the win. Paul Johnson,, "‘He’s a monster’: Arizona recruit Mojo Weerts takes over on both sides of the ball as Batavia holds off St. Charles North," 27 Mar. 2021 Andela eventually returned to the free throws line and hit two more to ice the win. oregonlive, "Oregon State rallies from 16 points down to produce 83-79 OT stunner over UCLA, advances to Pac-12 semifinals," 12 Mar. 2021 Gibson hit two free throws with six seconds left to ice the game. Joseph Hoyt, Dallas News, "Kimball pulls off another comeback, knocks off Amarillo in OT to secure 5A state championship bid," 9 Mar. 2021 Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 weeks, and used to ice cupcakes. Dallas News, "Macaron master class: A step-by-step recipe from Bisous Bisous Patisserie in Dallas," 8 Mar. 2021 On Sunday, a system working east through the central and eastern United States will bring snow and ice to the northern tier of states, with showers and thunderstorms from the Ohio Valley to Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, and Deep South. Star Tribune, "Waking Up To Fresh Snow And Cooler Temperatures Sunday," 27 Feb. 2021 The announcement comes as a massive winter storm brought snow and ice across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic with warnings extended as far south as weather-weary Texas. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "Winter storm recall: Snowthrower sold at Home Depot, Ace Hardware recalled for amputation hazard," 19 Feb. 2021 Camp Perry was opened again to ice fishermen and their vehicles on Tuesday, according to the Ohio Division of Wildlife. D'arcy Egan, cleveland, "Lake Erie walleye fishing slow, but promising: NE Ohio fishing report for weekend of Feb. 19-21," 18 Feb. 2021

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


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


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for ice


Middle English is, from Old English īs; akin to Old High German īs ice, Avestan isu- icy

Noun suffix

French, suffix forming nouns from nouns and adjectives, going back to Old French -ise, -ice, partially nativized borrowing from Latin -itia, suffix forming nouns from adjectives (usually monosyllabic), extended form of -ia -ia entry 1, and -itium, forming nouns usually designating status (as servitium service entry 1) from personal nouns

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Learn More about ice

Time Traveler for ice

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for ice

Last Updated

6 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ice.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for ice



English Language Learners Definition of ice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: frozen water
: a sheet of frozen water
: cubes or pieces of ice



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

: to make (something) cold with ice
: to cover (something, such as a cake) with icing
US, informal : to make winning or getting (something) certain


\ ˈīs How to pronounce ice (audio) \

Kids Definition of ice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : frozen water
2 : a sheet of frozen water She skated out onto the ice.
3 : a substance like ice Ammonia ice is found in the rings of Saturn.
4 : a frozen dessert usually made with sweetened fruit juice


iced; icing

Kids Definition of ice (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to coat or become coated with ice The roads iced up.
2 : to chill with ice Ice the glasses.
3 : to cover with icing


\ ˈīs How to pronounce ice (audio) \

Medical Definition of ice

1 : frozen water

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Legal Definition of ICE

Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Comments on ice

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