Nearby words

  1. stealth,
  2. stealth bomber,
  3. stealth tax,
  4. stealth technology,
  5. stealthy,
  6. steam bath,
  7. steam beer,
  8. steam boiler,
  9. steam chest,
  10. steam coal


    blow/let off steam, Informal. to give vent to one's repressed emotions, especially by talking or behaving in an unrestrained manner: Don't take her remarks too seriously—she was just blowing off steam.

Origin of steam

before 1000; Middle English steme, Old English stēam; cognate with Dutch stoom

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

British Dictionary definitions for steam up

steam up

verb (adverb)

to cover (windows, etc) or (of windows, etc) to become covered with a film of condensed steam
(tr; usually passive) slang to excite or make angryhe's all steamed up about the delay


/ (stiːm) /



See also steam up

Word Origin for steam

Old English; related to Dutch stoom steam, perhaps to Old High German stioban to raise dust, Gothic stubjus dust

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 steam up
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for steam up


[ stēm ]

Water in its gaseous state, especially at a temperature above the boiling point of water (above 100°C, or 212°F, at sea level). See Note at vapor.
A mist of condensed water vapor.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with steam up


see blow off steam; full speed (steam) ahead; get up steam; run out of steam; under one's own steam.

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