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snow

[snoh]
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noun
  1. Meteorology. a precipitation in the form of ice crystals, mainly of intricately branched, hexagonal form and often agglomerated into snowflakes, formed directly from the freezing of the water vapor in the air.Compare ice crystals, snow grains, snow pellets.
  2. these flakes as forming a layer on the ground or other surface.
  3. the fall of these flakes or a storm during which these flakes fall.
  4. something resembling a layer of these flakes in whiteness, softness, or the like: the snow of fresh linen.
  5. Literary.
    1. white blossoms.
    2. the white color of snow.
  6. Slang. cocaine or heroin.
  7. white spots or bands on a television screen caused by a weak signal.Compare hash1(def 5).
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verb (used without object)
  1. to send down snow; fall as snow.
  2. to descend like snow.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to let fall as or like snow.
  2. Slang.
    1. to make an overwhelming impression on: The view really snowed them.
    2. to persuade or deceive: She was snowed into believing everything.
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Verb Phrases
  1. snow under,
    1. to cover with or bury in snow.
    2. to overwhelm with a larger amount of something than can be conveniently dealt with.
    3. to defeat overwhelmingly.
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Origin of snow

before 900; (noun) Middle English; Old English snāw; cognate with Dutch sneeuw, German Schnee, Old Norse snǣr, Gothic snaiws, Latin nix (genitive nivis), Greek níps (accusative nípha), OCS sněgŭ; (v.) Middle English snowen, derivative of the noun; replacing Middle English snewen, Old English snīwan; cognate with Old High German snīwan (German schneien), Middle Low German, Middle Dutch snīen
Related formssnow·less, adjectivesnow·like, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for snowing

snow

noun
  1. precipitation from clouds in the form of flakes of ice crystals formed in the upper atmosphereRelated adjective: niveous
  2. a layer of snowflakes on the ground
  3. a fall of such precipitation
  4. anything resembling snow in whiteness, softness, etc
  5. the random pattern of white spots on a television or radar screen, produced by noise in the receiver and occurring when the signal is weak or absent
  6. slang cocaine
  7. See carbon dioxide snow
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verb
  1. (intr; with it as subject) to be the case that snow is falling
  2. (tr; usually passive, foll by over, under, in, or up) to cover or confine with a heavy fall of snow
  3. (often with it as subject) to fall or cause to fall as or like snow
  4. (tr) US and Canadian slang to deceive or overwhelm with elaborate often insincere talkSee snow job
  5. be snowed under to be overwhelmed, esp with paperwork
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Derived Formssnowless, adjectivesnowlike, adjective

Word Origin

Old English snāw; related to Old Norse snjōr, Gothic snaiws, Old High German snēo, Greek nipha

Snow

noun
  1. C (harles) P (ercy), Baron. 1905–80, British novelist and physicist. His novels include the series Strangers and Brothers (1949–70)
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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 snowing

snow

n.

Old English snaw "snow, that which falls as snow; a fall of snow; a snowstorm," from Proto-Germanic *snaiwaz (cf. Old Saxon and Old High German sneo, Old Frisian and Middle Low German sne, Middle Dutch snee, Dutch sneeuw, German Schnee, Old Norse snjor, Gothic snaiws "snow"), from PIE root *sniegwh- "snow; to snow" (cf. Greek nipha, Latin nix (genitive nivis), Old Irish snechta, Irish sneachd, Welsh nyf, Lithuanian sniegas, Old Prussian snaygis, Old Church Slavonic snegu, Russian snieg', Slovak sneh "snow"). The cognate in Sanskrit, snihyati, came to mean "he gets wet." As slang for "cocaine" it is attested from 1914.

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snow

v.

c.1300, replacing Old English sniwan, which would have yielded modern snew (which existed as a parallel form until 17c. and, in Yorkshire, even later), from the root of snow (n.). Cf. Middle Dutch sneuuwen, Dutch sneeuwen, Old Norse snjova, Swedish snöga.

Also þikke as snow þat snew,
Or al so hail þat stormes blew.
[Robert Mannyng of Brunne, transl. Wace's "Chronicle," c.1330]

The figurative sense of "overwhelm; surround, cover, and imprison" (as deep snows can do to livestock) is 1880, American English, in phrase to snow (someone) under. Snow job "strong, persistent persuasion in a dubious cause" is World War II armed forces slang, probably from the same metaphoric image.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

snowing in Science

snow

[snō]
  1. Precipitation that falls to earth in the form of ice crystals that have complex branched hexagonal patterns. Snow usually falls from stratus and stratocumulus clouds, but it can also fall from cumulus and cumulonimbus clouds.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with snowing

snow

In addition to the idioms beginning with snow

  • snow job
  • snow under

also see:

  • pure as the driven snow
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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.