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white heat

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noun
  1. a stage of intense activity, excitement, feeling, etc.: The sales campaign is at white heat.
  2. an intense heat at which a substance glows with white light.

Origin of white heat

First recorded in 1700–10
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for white heat

Historical Examples

  • It was the quiet of tense nerves and imagination at white-heat.

    Prester John

    John Buchan

  • For if Tom was quickly brought to a white-heat, radiation was equally rapid.

    The Graysons

    Edward Eggleston

  • The noon meal is rushed through, perhaps when the brain is at white-heat.

  • Though the words were mild, the feelings of the two men were at white-heat.

    Mistress Nell

    George C. Hazelton, Jr.

  • The enthusiasm of the people for the Repeal of the Union was then at white-heat.


British Dictionary definitions for white heat

white heat

noun
  1. intense heat or a very high temperature, characterized by emission of white light
  2. informal a state of intense excitement or activity
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