vapor

noun
va·​por | \ ˈvā-pər How to pronounce vapor (audio) \

Definition of vapor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : diffused matter (such as smoke or fog) suspended floating in the air and impairing its transparency
2a : a substance in the gaseous state as distinguished from the liquid or solid state
b : a substance (such as gasoline, alcohol, mercury, or benzoin) vaporized for industrial, therapeutic, or military uses also : a mixture (such as the explosive mixture in an internal combustion engine) of such a vapor with air
3a : something unsubstantial or transitory : phantasm
b : a foolish or fanciful idea
4 vapors plural
a archaic : exhalations of bodily organs (such as the stomach) held to affect the physical or mental condition
b : a depressed or hysterical nervous condition

vapor

verb
vapored; vaporing\ ˈvā-​p(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce vapor (audio) \

Definition of vapor (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to rise or pass off in vapor
b : to emit vapor
2 : to indulge in bragging, blustering, or idle talk

Other Words from vapor

Verb

vaporer \ ˈvā-​pər-​ər How to pronounce vapor (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for vapor

Synonyms: Verb

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Verb

Speakers of the English language, mindful of the lightness and unsubstantiality of floating air and gas, have put several airy words to good use over the years to describe the act of talking idly or boastfully. The earliest such word is blow (as in "he kept blowing about his new job"), which drifted into English sometime about 1400. Vapor wafted into the language in the 1620s, and a little over 200 years later windbags, later also known as gasbags, not only blew and vapored but also gassed about anything they could.

Examples of vapor in a Sentence

Verb a faded Southern belle tiresomely vaporing about all the handsome beaux she had in her long-ago youth
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Normally the vapor takes around 2-3 years to dissipate, but the water from the Jan. 15 eruption could take 5-10 years to evaporate. Sarah Rumpf, Fox News, 4 Aug. 2022 Fortunately, the warming effect of the water vapor is expected to be small and temporary, and will dissipate as the extra vapor diminishes. Ashley Strickland, CNN, 3 Aug. 2022 One possible way to extend the functionality of the gripper would be to apply a thin layer of vapor-impermeable coating. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 29 July 2022 In the event of an engine failure, engine oil and fuel vapor may be released into the engine compartment and accumulate near ignition sources such as hot engine or exhaust components, possibly resulting in an engine compartment fire. Detroit Free Press, 26 July 2022 In the event of an engine failure, engine oil and fuel vapor may be released into the engine compartment and accumulate near ignition sources such as hot engine or exhaust components, possibly resulting in an engine compartment fire. USA TODAY, 22 July 2022 If engine failure occurs, engine oil and fuel vapor could be released into the chamber where the engine is stored and collected around ignition sources such as the engine and exhaust components. Amanda Maile, ABC News, 14 July 2022 The launch was delayed from June 10 after teams detected hydrazine vapor in the spacecraft, and ultimately decided to replace the vehicle’s parachutes. Joe Mario Pedersen, Orlando Sentinel, 14 July 2022 The device was encased in a matte shell and delivered vapor automatically when a person inhaled, like a real cigarette. Wired, 12 July 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Despite what ads tell you, no waterproof shell is completely breathable—blocking water requires some impediments to vapor transfer. Outside Online, 27 May 2022 The work had to be done quickly as water vanished to vapor in the early summer heat. Scott Wilson, Washington Post, 19 June 2021 Meanwhile, in a natural process called wicking, that moisture turns to vapor as it is continuously pulled outward from minuscule air spaces between the fibers of the felt, eventually evaporating entirely. Emma Wartzman, Bon Appétit, 5 Nov. 2020 In the fourth, Evers used his veto in an attempt to ensure a tax on vaping products would apply to any device containing fluid and to vapor fluid sold separately. Washington Post, 31 July 2019 In the fourth, Evers used his veto in an attempt to ensure a tax on vaping products would apply to any device containing fluid and to vapor fluid sold separately. Washington Post, 31 July 2019 But whole body cryotherapy exposes the body for a couple of minutes to vapor that has been supercooled to somewhere between minus 200 and minus 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Aaron E. Carroll, New York Times, 2 Jan. 2017 See More

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

First Known Use of vapor

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

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

History and Etymology for vapor

Noun

Middle English vapour, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French vapor, vapour, borrowed from Latin vapor, earlier vapōs "exhalation, steam, warmth," perhaps akin to Lithuanian kvãpas "smell, scent"

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The first known use of vapor was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near vapor

vapography

vapor

vaporability

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Statistics for vapor

Last Updated

9 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Vapor.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/vapor. Accessed 17 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for vapor

vapor

noun
va·​por | \ ˈvā-pər How to pronounce vapor (audio) \

Kids Definition of vapor

1 : fine bits (as of fog or smoke) floating in the air and clouding it
2 : a substance in the form of a gas water vapor

vapor

noun
va·​por
variants: or chiefly British vapour \ ˈvā-​pər How to pronounce vapor (audio) \

Medical Definition of vapor

1a : a substance in the gaseous state as distinguished from the liquid or solid state
b : a substance (as alcohol or benzoin) vaporized for industrial, therapeutic, or military uses
2 vapors or chiefly British vapours plural
a : exhalations of bodily organs (as the stomach) formerly held to affect the physical or mental condition
b : a depressed or hysterical nervous condition

More from Merriam-Webster on vapor

Nglish: Translation of vapor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vapor for Arabic Speakers

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