[ tem-perd ]
/ ˈtɛm pərd /


having a temper or disposition of a specified character (usually used in combination): a good-tempered child.
Music. tuned in accordance with some other temperament than just or pure temperament, especially tuned in equal temperament.
made less intense or violent, especially by the influence of something good or benign: justice tempered with mercy.
properly moistened or mixed, as clay.
Metallurgy. of or relating to steel or cast iron that has been tempered.

Nearby words

  1. temperature,
  2. temperature gradient,
  3. temperature inversion,
  4. temperature spot,
  5. temperature-humidity index,
  6. tempering,
  7. tempest,
  8. tempest in a teapot,
  9. tempest, the,
  10. tempest-tossed

Origin of tempered

Middle English word dating back to 1325–75; see origin at temper, -ed2, -ed3

Related formsnon·tem·pered, adjectiveun·tem·pered, adjective


[ tem-per ]
/ ˈtɛm pər /


verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to be or become tempered.

Origin of temper

before 1000; (v.) Middle English tempren, Old English temprian < Latin temperāre to divide or proportion duly, temper; (noun) Middle English: proportion, derivative of the v.

Related forms

Synonym study

1. See disposition. 10. See modify.

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

Examples from the Web for tempered

British Dictionary definitions for tempered


/ (ˈtɛmpəd) /


  1. (of a scale) having the frequency differences between notes adjusted in accordance with the system of equal temperamentSee temperament
  2. (of an interval) expanded or contracted from the state of being pure
(in combination) having a temper or temperament as specifiedill-tempered


/ (ˈtɛmpə) /


verb (tr)

Derived Formstemperable, adjectivetemperability, nountemperer, noun

Word Origin for temper

Old English temprian to mingle, (influenced by Old French temprer), from Latin temperāre to mix, probably from tempus time

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 tempered
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for tempered


[ tĕmpər ]


A state of mind or emotions; mood.
A tendency to become easily angry or irritable.
An outburst of rage.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with tempered


see hold one's temper; lose one's temper.

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