1 a : parched with heat especially of the sun : hot
b : giving off intense heat : scorching
Did You Know?
Torrid derives from the Latin verb torrēre, which means "to burn" or "to parch" and is an ancestor of our word toast. Despite the dry implications of this root, it is also an ancestor of torrent, which can refer to a violent stream of liquid (as in "a torrent of rain"). Torrid first appeared in English in the 16th century, and was originally used to describe something burned or scorched by exposure to the sun. The term torrid zone later came about to refer to tropical regions of the Earth. Torrid has taken on several extended meanings that we would use for hot, including "showing fiery passion," as in "torrid love letters," or "displaying unusual luck or fortune," as in "a baseball player on a torrid hitting streak."
"There are tales of torrid love affairs…." — Madeleine Aggeler, The Cut, 31 May 2019
"Scotch is my daily drink of choice…. But when summer hits New York hard, I occasionally get something lighter and more refreshing to survive the increasingly torrid days." — Karla Alindahao, Forbes.com, 10 May 2015
Test Your Vocabulary with M-W Quizzes
Word Family Quiz
What word is distantly related to the Latin verb torrēre and refers to a flat area created on the side of a hill that is used for growing crops? [Hint: It has 7 letters and begins with "t."]VIEW THE ANSWER
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP