boiling point

See more synonyms for boiling point on
  1. Physics, Chemistry. the temperature at which the vapor pressure of a liquid is equal to the pressure of the atmosphere on the liquid, equal to 212°F (100°C) for water at sea level. Abbreviation: b.p.
  2. the point beyond which one becomes angry, outraged, or agitated.
  3. the point at which matters reach a crisis.

Origin of boiling point

First recorded in 1765–75 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for boiling point

Historical Examples of boiling point

  • It rose to boiling-point amidst the steam from her cooking pots.

    The Golden Woman

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • It may be below the freezing-point or above the boiling-point of water.

  • The mere sight of her raised his enthusiasm to boiling-point.

    The Bill-Toppers

    Andre Castaigne

  • Keep at boiling-point, but not boiling, till the oysters are firm and plump.

    Choice Cookery

    Catherine Owen

  • Yet if they do not reach the boiling-point they will not thicken.

    Choice Cookery

    Catherine Owen

British Dictionary definitions for boiling point

boiling point

  1. the temperature at which a liquid boils at a given pressure, usually atmospheric pressure at sea level; the temperature at which the vapour pressure of a liquid equals the external pressure
  2. informal the condition of being angered or highly excited
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

boiling point in Science

boiling point

  1. The temperature at which a liquid changes to a vapor or gas. This temperature stays the same until all the liquid has vaporized. As the temperature of a liquid rises, the pressure of escaping vapor also rises, and at the boiling point the pressure of the escaping vapor is equal to that exerted on the liquid by the surrounding air, causing bubbles to form. Typically boiling points are measured at sea level. At higher altitudes, where atmospheric pressure is lower, boiling points are lower. The boiling point of water at sea level is 100°C (212°F), while at the top of Mount Everest it is 71°C (159.8°F).
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

boiling point in Culture

boiling point

The temperature at which a given material changes from a liquid to a gas. The boiling point is the same temperature as the condensation point. (See phases of matter.)


Water boils at 212 degrees Fahrenheit (see also Fahrenheit) or 100 degrees Celsius.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with boiling point

boiling point


A climax or crisis; a high degree of fury, excitement, or outrage. For example, The union's disgust with management has reached the boiling point. This metaphoric term alludes to the temperature at which water boils. [Second half of 1700s]


have a low boiling point. Become angry quite readily, as in Don't tease her anymore—she has a low boiling point. This phrase means that it takes less heat than usual for a boiling point to be reached. [First half of 1800s] Also see boil over; make one's blood boil.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.