smother [smuhth -er] /ˈsmʌð ər/ Show IPA
verb (used with object)
to stifle or suffocate, as by smoke or other means of preventing free breathing.
to extinguish or deaden (fire, coals, etc.) by covering so as to exclude air.
to cover closely or thickly; envelop:
to smother a steak with mushrooms.
to suppress or repress:
to smother feelings.
to steam (food) slowly in a heavy, tightly closed vessel with a minimum of liquid:
smothered chicken and onions.
verb (used without object)
to become stifled or suffocated; be prevented from breathing.
to be stifled; be suppressed or concealed.
dense, stifling smoke.
a smoking or smoldering state, as of burning matter.
dust, fog, spray, etc., in a dense or enveloping cloud.
an overspreading profusion of anything:
a smother of papers.
1125–75; (noun) Middle English smorther dense smoke; akin to Old English smorian to suffocate; (v.) Middle English smo(r)theren, derivative of the noun