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[snoh] /snoʊ/
Meteorology. a precipitation in the form of ice crystals, mainly of intricately branched, hexagonal form and often agglomerated into snowflakes, formed directly from the freezing of the water vapor in the air.
these flakes as forming a layer on the ground or other surface.
the fall of these flakes or a storm during which these flakes fall.
something resembling a layer of these flakes in whiteness, softness, or the like:
the snow of fresh linen.
  1. white blossoms.
  2. the white color of snow.
Slang. cocaine or heroin.
white spots or bands on a television screen caused by a weak signal.
Compare hash1 (def 5).
verb (used without object)
to send down snow; fall as snow.
to descend like snow.
verb (used with object)
to let fall as or like snow.
  1. to make an overwhelming impression on:
    The view really snowed them.
  2. to persuade or deceive:
    She was snowed into believing everything.
Verb phrases
snow under,
  1. to cover with or bury in snow.
  2. to overwhelm with a larger amount of something than can be conveniently dealt with.
  3. to defeat overwhelmingly.
Origin of snow
before 900; (noun) Middle English; Old English snāw; cognate with Dutch sneeuw, German Schnee, Old Norse snǣr, Gothic snaiws, Latin nix (genitive nivis), Greek níps (accusative nípha), OCS sněgŭ; (v.) Middle English snowen, derivative of the noun; replacing Middle English snewen, Old English snīwan; cognate with Old High German snīwan (German schneien), Middle Low German, Middle Dutch snīen
Related forms
snowless, adjective
snowlike, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for snow under
Historical Examples
  • He stamped them into the snow under him in the wallowing struggle.

    White Fang Jack London
  • The snow under the feet cried out with a note like glass and steel.

    Wayside Courtships Hamlin Garland
  • The snow under their feet cried out with a note like glass and steel.

  • Instantly the crowd melted away like snow under a blast of fire.

  • He stepped on clouds, violet and gold and white and soft as snow under his feet.

    Shaman Robert Shea
  • The chill faded from Pryak's expression like snow under a hot sun.

    Warrior of the Dawn Howard Carleton Browne
  • "On the bare ground—on the snow—under the clear sky," they replied.

  • He felt the chill of the snow under his knees, and its wetness in his cuffs.

    Seven Keys to Baldpate Earl Derr Biggers
  • Though the sun was shining, the snow under their feet was hard with frost.

    The Duke's Children

    Anthony Trollope
  • The very music of the snow under their feet had given them warning.

    Old Indian Days [AKA Ohiyesa], Charles A. Eastman
British Dictionary definitions for snow under


precipitation from clouds in the form of flakes of ice crystals formed in the upper atmosphere related adjective niveous
a layer of snowflakes on the ground
a fall of such precipitation
anything resembling snow in whiteness, softness, etc
the random pattern of white spots on a television or radar screen, produced by noise in the receiver and occurring when the signal is weak or absent
(slang) cocaine
(intransitive; with it as subject) to be the case that snow is falling
(transitive; usually passive, foll by over, under, in, or up) to cover or confine with a heavy fall of snow
often with it as subject. to fall or cause to fall as or like snow
(transitive) (US & Canadian, slang) to deceive or overwhelm with elaborate often insincere talk See snow job
be snowed under, to be overwhelmed, esp with paperwork
Derived Forms
snowless, adjective
snowlike, adjective
Word Origin
Old English snāw; related to Old Norse snjōr, Gothic snaiws, Old High German snēo, Greek nipha


C(harles) P(ercy), Baron. 1905–80, British novelist and physicist. His novels include the series Strangers and Brothers (1949–70)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for snow under



Old English snaw "snow, that which falls as snow; a fall of snow; a snowstorm," from Proto-Germanic *snaiwaz (cf. Old Saxon and Old High German sneo, Old Frisian and Middle Low German sne, Middle Dutch snee, Dutch sneeuw, German Schnee, Old Norse snjor, Gothic snaiws "snow"), from PIE root *sniegwh- "snow; to snow" (cf. Greek nipha, Latin nix (genitive nivis), Old Irish snechta, Irish sneachd, Welsh nyf, Lithuanian sniegas, Old Prussian snaygis, Old Church Slavonic snegu, Russian snieg', Slovak sneh "snow"). The cognate in Sanskrit, snihyati, came to mean "he gets wet." As slang for "cocaine" it is attested from 1914.



c.1300, replacing Old English sniwan, which would have yielded modern snew (which existed as a parallel form until 17c. and, in Yorkshire, even later), from the root of snow (n.). Cf. Middle Dutch sneuuwen, Dutch sneeuwen, Old Norse snjova, Swedish snöga.

Also þikke as snow þat snew,
Or al so hail þat stormes blew.
[Robert Mannyng of Brunne, transl. Wace's "Chronicle," c.1330]
The figurative sense of "overwhelm; surround, cover, and imprison" (as deep snows can do to livestock) is 1880, American English, in phrase to snow (someone) under. Snow job "strong, persistent persuasion in a dubious cause" is World War II armed forces slang, probably from the same metaphoric image.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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snow under in Science
Precipitation that falls to earth in the form of ice crystals that have complex branched hexagonal patterns. Snow usually falls from stratus and stratocumulus clouds, but it can also fall from cumulus and cumulonimbus clouds.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for snow under

snow under

verb phrase

To burden or assail with excessive demands, work, etc; overwhelm: until a frailer man than he would have been snowed under (1880+)



  1. Cocaine: And he was also snorting snow (1914+ Narcotics)
  2. : I thought his rationale was pure snow


To persuade in a dubious cause, esp by exaggeration, appeals to common sentiment, etc; blow smoke: The electorate will not be snowed into supporting that silly measure (1945+)

Related Terms

eyes like pissholes in the snow

[verb sense fr the idea of snowing someone under with articulate reasons]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with snow under

snow under

Overwhelm, overpower, as in I can't go; I'm just snowed under with work, or We were snowed under by more votes than we could have anticipated. This expression alludes to being buried in snow. [ Late 1800s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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