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See more synonyms for anneal on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to heat (glass, earthenware, metals, etc.) to remove or prevent internal stress.
  2. to free from internal stress by heating and gradually cooling.
  3. to toughen or temper.
  4. Biochemistry. to recombine (nucleic acid strands) at low temperature after separating by heat.
  5. to fuse colors onto (a vitreous or metallic surface) by heating.
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  1. an act, instance, or product of annealing.
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Origin of anneal

before 1000; Middle English anelen, Old English anǣlan to kindle, equivalent to an- on + ǣlan to burn, akin to āl fire
Related formsan·neal·er, nounun·an·nealed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for anneal

Historical Examples

  • As the hammering hardens the metal it is necessary to anneal it each time after going over the surface.

    Copper Work

    Augustus F. Rose

  • Taps once out in length seem to get worse at every heating, whether to anneal or to harden.

  • Flange one end of this tube a little, and anneal the flange well in the smoky flame.

  • The whole of the end of the tube is now cautiously reheated and then cooled slowly to anneal it.

  • Anneal with great care, and cool in such a position that the acid cannot reach the hot glass.

British Dictionary definitions for anneal


  1. to temper or toughen (something) by heat treatment
  2. to subject to or undergo some physical treatment, esp heating, that removes internal stress, crystal defects, and dislocations
  3. (tr) to toughen or strengthen (the will, determination, etc)
  4. (often foll by out) physics to disappear or cause to disappear by a rearrangement of atomsdefects anneal out at different temperatures
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  1. an act of annealing
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Derived Formsannealer, noun

Word Origin

Old English onǣlan, from on + ǣlan to burn, from āl fire
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

Word Origin and History for anneal


Old English onælan "to set on fire, kindle," from on- "on" + ælan "to burn, bake," from Proto-Germanic *ailan, "probably" [Watkins] from PIE *ai- "to burn" (see ash (n.1)); related to Old English æled "fire, firebrand," Old Norse eldr, Danish ild "fire." Related: Annealed; annealing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper