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steep

1
[steep]
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adjective, steep·er, steep·est.
  1. having an almost vertical slope or pitch, or a relatively high gradient, as a hill, an ascent, stairs, etc.
  2. (of a price or amount) unduly high; exorbitant: Those prices are too steep for me.
  3. extreme or incredible, as a statement or story.
  4. high or lofty.
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noun
  1. a steep place; declivity, as of a hill.
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Origin of steep

1
before 900; Middle English stepe (adj.), Old English stēap; akin to stoop1
Related formssteep·ly, adverbsteep·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for steepness

angle, point, shelf, ramp, hill, slope, incline, degree, level, gradient, slant, height, cant, dip, steepness, declivity, tip, bias, bend, pitch

Examples from the Web for steepness

Historical Examples of steepness

  • On its northern side, the steepness of the hill formed the only defence.'

    Devon, Its Moorlands, Streams and Coasts

    Rosalind Northcote

  • The weather was rough, and the height and steepness discouraged us.

  • The steepness of the precipice was guard enough near the town.

  • The steepness of the declivity made it necessary for Orso to dismount.

    Columba

    Prosper Merimee

  • He would doubtless have run had it not been for the steepness of the earlier ascents.

    Godfrey Morgan

    Jules Verne


British Dictionary definitions for steepness

steep

1
adjective
    1. having or being a slope or gradient approaching the perpendicular
    2. (as noun)the steep
  1. informal (of a fee, price, demand, etc) unduly high; unreasonable (esp in the phrase that's a bit steep)
  2. informal excessively demanding or ambitiousa steep task
  3. British informal (of a statement) extreme or far-fetched
  4. obsolete elevated
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Derived Formssteeply, adverbsteepness, noun

Word Origin for steep

Old English steap; related to Old Frisian stāp, Old High German stouf cliff, Old Norse staup

steep

2
verb
  1. to soak or be soaked in a liquid in order to soften, cleanse, extract an element, etc
  2. (tr; usually passive) to saturate; imbuesteeped in ideology
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noun
  1. an instance or the process of steeping or the condition of being steeped
  2. a liquid or solution used for the purpose of steeping something
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Derived Formssteeper, noun

Word Origin for steep

Old English stēpan; related to steap vessel, cup, Old High German stouf, Old Norse staup, Middle Dutch stōp
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 steepness

steep

adj.

"having a sharp slope," Old English steap "high, lofty," from Proto-Germanic *staupaz (cf. Old Frisian stap, Middle High German *stouf), from PIE *steup- "to push, stick, knock, beat," with derivations referring to projecting objects (cf. Greek typtein "to strike," typos "a blow, mold, die;" Sanskrit tup- "harm," tundate "pushes, stabs;" Gothic stautan "push;" Old Norse stuttr "short"). The sense of "precipitous" is from c.1200. The slang sense "at a high price" is a U.S. coinage first attested 1856. Related: Steeply; steepness.

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steep

v.

"to soak in a liquid," late 14c., of uncertain origin, originally in reference to barley or malt, probably cognate with Old Norse steypa "to pour out, throw" (or an unrecorded Old English cognate), from Proto-Germanic *staupijanan. Related: Steeped; steeping.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper