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[ahys-boks] /ˈaɪsˌbɒks/
an insulated cabinet or chest with a partition for ice, used for preserving or cooling food, beverages, etc.
Older Use. an electric or gas refrigerator.
Nautical. an enclosed area in the bottom of a vessel through which sea water can be pumped up for use in the condenser in icy waters.
Slang. an isolation cell in a prison.
Origin of icebox
1830-40; ice + box1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for icebox
  • We've put in electric lights, an icebox, and air-conditioning.
  • Food will not keep as long in the small fridges as it does in the average full-sized icebox.
  • He met his returning host, and together they went to raid the icebox.
  • In another corner of the room behind a screen was a gas plate and an icebox.
  • In simpler terms, if you're looking for an elephant in the house, the agents shouldn't be looking in the icebox.
British Dictionary definitions for icebox


a compartment in a refrigerator for storing or making ice
an insulated cabinet packed with ice for storing food
(US & Canadian) a refrigerator
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
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Word Origin and History for icebox

also ice-box, 1839, from ice (n.) + box (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for icebox


  1. A solitary confinement cell; the HOLE: When a prisoner is sent to the ''icebox'' (1920s+ Prison)
  2. A prison (1920s+ Prison)
  3. The imagined place where persons and things are held in reserve; on the back burner: I got a left-hander in the icebox (1940s+)
  4. A very cold place: This building's an icebox (1940s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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