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[suhm-er] /ˈsʌm ər/
the season between spring and autumn, in the Northern Hemisphere from the summer solstice to the autumnal equinox, and in the Southern Hemisphere from the winter solstice to the vernal equinox.
the period comprising the months of June, July, and August in the U.S., and from the middle of May to the middle of August in Great Britain.
a period of hot, usually sunny weather:
We had no real summer last year.
the hotter half of the year (opposed to winter):
They spend the summers in New Hampshire and the winters in Florida.
the period of finest development, perfection, or beauty previous to any decline:
the summer of life.
a whole year as represented by this season:
a girl of fifteen summers.
of, relating to, or characteristic of summer:
Iced tea is a summer drink.
appropriate for or done during the summer:
summer clothes; summer sports.
having the weather or warmth of summer:
summer days in late October.
verb (used without object)
to spend or pass the summer:
They summered in Maine.
verb (used with object)
to keep, feed, or manage during the summer:
Sheep are summered in high pastures.
to make summerlike.
Origin of summer1
before 900; Middle English sumer, Old English sumor; cognate with Dutch zomer, German Sommer, Old Norse sumar summer; akin to Sanskrit samā half-year, year, Old Irish sam-, Welsh haf summer
Related forms
summerless, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for summering
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She was summering in a little town in the Westphalia district.

    Germany in War Time

    Mary Ethel McAuley
  • I am a sort of neighbor of your family, since I, too, am summering at Yonkers.

    A Pasteboard Crown Clara Morris
  • With early September the summering of the Ute Park came to a close.


    Susan Coolidge
  • He has been summering in Connecticut, and he avers that his talk about native superstition is founded on close observation.

  • Feeding is believed to occur primarily in the summering grounds.

    Humpback Whales in Glacier Bay National Monument, Alaska United States Department of Commerce, Marine Mammal Commission
  • Not far from the summering place where clustered the lodges of Pontiac and his kinsmen rose the walls of Fort Detroit.

    Four American Indians Edson L. Whitney
  • True, as a general thing, they are the last objects you desire to see, when you are summering.

  • It was the inaccessibility and general lack of popular attractions which had led him to select Nepaug as a summering place.

    Flint Maud Wilder Goodwin
  • Isn't it strange and sad and pitiful, that it is the summer guest who alone enjoys the delights of summering in the country?

British Dictionary definitions for summering


(sometimes capital)
  1. the warmest season of the year, between spring and autumn, astronomically from the June solstice to the September equinox in the N hemisphere and at the opposite time of year in the S hemisphere
  2. (as modifier): summer flowers, a summer dress, related adjective aestival
the period of hot weather associated with the summer
a time of blossoming, greatest happiness, etc
(mainly poetic) a year represented by this season: a child of nine summers
(intransitive) to spend the summer (at a place)
(transitive) to keep or feed (farm animals) during the summer: they summered their cattle on the mountain slopes
Derived Forms
summerless, adjective
summer-like, adjective
summerly, adjective, adverb
summery, adjective
summeriness, noun
Word Origin
Old English sumor; related to Old Frisian sumur, Old Norse sumar, Old High German sumar, Sanskrit samā season


Also called summer tree. a large horizontal beam or girder, esp one that supports floor joists
another name for lintel
a stone on the top of a column, pier, or wall that supports an arch or lintel
Word Origin
C14: from Anglo-Norman somer, from Old French somier beam, packhorse, from Late Latin sagmārius (equus) pack(horse), from sagma a packsaddle, from Greek
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 summering



"hot season of the year," Old English sumor, from Proto-Germanic *sumur- (cf. Old Saxon, Old Norse, Old High German sumar, Old Frisian sumur, Middle Dutch somer, Dutch zomer, German Sommer), from PIE root *sem- (cf. Sanskrit sama "season, half-year," Avestan hama "in summer," Armenian amarn "summer," Old Irish sam, Old Welsh ham, Welsh haf "summer"). Old Norse sumarsdag, first day of summer, was the Thursday that fell between April 9 and 15.

Summer camp is attested from 1893; summer resort is from 1832; summer school first recorded 1860; theatrical summer stock is attested from 1942.



"horizontal bearing beam," late 13c., from Anglo-French sumer, Old French somer "main beam," originally "pack horse," from Vulgar Latin *saumarius, from Late Latin sagmarius "pack horse," from sagma "packsaddle" (see sumpter).



"to pass the summer," mid-15c., from summer (n.1). Related: Summered; summering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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