[ freez-uhp ]
/ ˈfrizˌʌp /

noun Informal.

a freezing over of a body of water in an area.
a period of below-freezing temperatures.
the condition of being immobilized or inoperative through freezing: car engine freeze-up in winter.

Origin of freeze-up

1875–80, Americanism; noun use of verb phrase freeze up

Definition for freeze-up (2 of 2)

Origin of freeze

before 1000; (v.) Middle English fresen, Old English frēosan; cognate with Middle Low German vrēsen, Old Norse frjōsa, Old High German friosan (German frieren); (noun) late Middle English frese, derivative of the v.
Related forms
Can be confusedfreeze frieze Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for freeze-up

British Dictionary definitions for freeze-up (1 of 2)


noun informal

a period of freezing or extremely cold weather
US and Canadian
  1. the freezing of lakes, rivers, and topsoil in autumn or early winter
  2. the time of year when this occurs

British Dictionary definitions for freeze-up (2 of 2)


/ (friːz) /

verb freezes, freezing, froze (frəʊz) or frozen (ˈfrəʊzən)


sentence substitute

mainly US a command to stop still instantly or risk being shot
Derived Formsfreezable, adjective

Word Origin for freeze

Old English frēosan; related to Old Norse frjōsa, Old High German friosan, Latin prūrīre to itch; see frost
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

Medicine definitions for freeze-up


[ frēz ]


To pass from the liquid to the solid state by loss of heat.
To make or become congealed, stiffened, or hardened by exposure to cold.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for freeze-up


[ frēz ]

To change from a liquid to a solid state by cooling or being cooled to the freezing point.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.