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swelter

[swel-ter] /ˈswɛl tər/
verb (used without object)
1.
to suffer from oppressive heat.
verb (used with object)
2.
to oppress with heat.
3.
Archaic. to exude, as venom.
noun
4.
a sweltering condition.
Origin
late Middle English
1375-1425
1375-1425; late Middle English swelt(e)ren (v.), equivalent to swelt(en) to be overcome with heat (Old English sweltan to die; cognate with Old Norse svelta, Gothic swiltan) + -eren -er6
Related forms
unsweltered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for swelter
  • Museum curators often open their best shows in the fall, when the cooling off from the summer swelter seems to spark energy.
  • But he also knows that he is going to swelter, and maybe stumble, and possibly snag a sleeve in a car or bus door.
  • Act now be sure you won't swelter and suffer during the hot humid days and nights.
British Dictionary definitions for swelter

swelter

/ˈswɛltə/
verb
1.
(intransitive) to suffer under oppressive heat, esp to sweat and feel faint
2.
(transitive) (archaic) to exude (venom)
3.
(transitive) (rare) to cause to suffer under oppressive heat
noun
4.
a sweltering condition (esp in the phrase in a swelter)
5.
oppressive humid heat
Word Origin
C15 swelten, from Old English sweltan to die; related to Old Norse svelta to starve, Old High German swelzan to burn with passion; see sultry
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 swelter
v.

c.1400, frequentative of swelten "be faint (especially with heat)," late 14c., from Old English sweltan "to die," from Proto-Germanic *swel- (cf. Old Saxon sweltan "to die," Old Norse svelta "to put to death, starve," Gothic sviltan "to die"), originally "to burn slowly," hence "to be overcome with heat or fever;" also the source of Old English swelan "to burn," from PIE root *swel- (2) "to shine, beam" (see Selene). For specialization of words meaning "to die," cf. starve. Related: Sweltered; sweltering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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