- the degree of hardness and strength imparted to a metal, as by quenching, heat treatment, or cold working.
- the percentage of carbon in tool steel.
- the operation of tempering.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- tempe, vale of,
- temper color,
- temper tantrum,
Origin of temper
Examples from the Web for temper
“When I was a kid I used to have temper tantrums on the basketball court,” he says.Dean Baquet, the NYT’s Executive Editor, on Jill Abramson, Race, Surviving Cancer—and TMZ Envy|Lloyd Grove|September 16, 2014|DAILY BEAST
He is said to have received a warning from the overall al Qaeda organization to temper his videos.From ISIS Videos to JLaw Nudes, When Is Looking Abetting Evil?|Michael Daly|September 3, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Again, the Israeli temper is hot and quick, sometimes reason becomes blinded and emotions take control.
She placidly tells people she is dreaming until her frantic father finds her again and loses his temper.Diagnosing Jane, Louis C.K.’s Troubled Daughter on ‘Louie’ Who Can’t Separate Dreams From Reality|Russell Saunders|May 15, 2014|DAILY BEAST
He killed his own son and heir by whacking him over the head with the monarchal staff in a tsar-ish fit of temper.Russian History Is on Our Side: Putin Will Surely Screw Himself|P. J. O’Rourke|May 11, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Perhaps I was wrong to lose my temper and threaten him, but I am half mad.An American Suffragette|Isaac N. Stevens
And the burning wood hissed in the eye, just as the red-hot iron hisses in the water when a man seeks to temper steel for a sword.Myths and Legends of All Nations|Various
I've kept my temper as long as I could; but, dash it all, if you force me to speak out, I will!
He was maddeningly sure of himself, and while he sometimes gave back thrust for thrust, he never lost his temper.The Land of Promise|D. Torbett
His temper was well known; Monsieur Popinot, who had examined him, had not been able to get anything out of him.Scenes from a Courtesan's Life|Honore de Balzac
- to adjust the frequency differences between the notes of a scale on (a keyboard instrument) in order to allow modulation into other keys
- to make such an adjustment to the pitches of notes in (a scale)
Word Origin for temper
late Old English temprian "to bring to a proper or suitable state, to modify some excessive quality, to restrain within due limits," from Latin temperare "to mix correctly, moderate, regulate, blend," usually described as from tempus "time, season" (see temporal), with a sense of "proper time or season," but the sense history is obscure. Meaning "to make (steel) hard and elastic" is from late 14c. Sense of "to tune the pitch of a musical instrument" is recorded from c.1300. Related: Tempered; tempering.
late 14c., "due proportion of elements or qualities," from temper (v.). The sense of "characteristic state of mind" is first recorded 1590s; that of "calm state of mind" in c.1600; and that of "angry state of mind" (for bad temper) in 1828. Meaning "degree of hardness and resiliency in steel" is from late 15c.
see hold one's temper; lose one's temper.