[ oh-ver-heet ]
/ ˌoʊ vərˈhit /

verb (used with object)

to heat to excess.
to excite or agitate; make vehement: a crowd overheated by rabble-rousers.

verb (used without object)

to become overheated: a stove that overheats alarmingly; a temper that overheats with little provocation.


the state or condition of being overheated; excessive heat, agitation, or vehemence.

Nearby words

  1. overhead projector,
  2. overhead railway,
  3. overhead-valve engine,
  4. overheads,
  5. overhear,
  6. overheated,
  7. overhit,
  8. overhung,
  9. overhydrate,
  10. overijssel

Origin of overheat

First recorded in 1350–1400, overheat is from the Middle English word overheten. See over-, heat

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for overheat

British Dictionary definitions for overheat


/ (ˌəʊvəˈhiːt) /


to make or become excessively hot
(tr; often passive) to make very agitated, irritated, etc
(intr) (of an economy) to tend towards inflation, often as a result of excessive growth in demand
(tr) to cause (an economy) to tend towards inflation


the condition of being overheated
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 overheat



"to make too hot" (transitive), late 14c., from over- + heat (v.). Intransitive sense "to become too hot" is from 1902, originally in reference to motor engines. Related: Overheated; overheating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper