Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To be changed from a solid to a liquid state especially by the application of heat.
  • intransitive v. To dissolve: Sugar melts in water.
  • intransitive v. To disappear or vanish gradually as if by dissolving: The crowd melted away after the rally.
  • intransitive v. To pass or merge imperceptibly into something else: Sea melted into sky along the horizon.
  • intransitive v. To become softened in feeling: Our hearts melted at the child's tears.
  • intransitive v. Obsolete To be overcome or crushed, as by grief, dismay, or fear.
  • transitive v. To change (a solid) to a liquid state especially by the application of heat.
  • transitive v. To dissolve: The tide melted our sand castle away.
  • transitive v. To cause to disappear gradually; disperse.
  • transitive v. To cause (units) to blend: "Here individuals of all races are melted into a new race of men” ( Michel Guillaume Jean de Crèvecoeur).
  • transitive v. To soften (someone's feelings); make gentle or tender.
  • n. A melted solid; a fused mass.
  • n. The state of being melted.
  • n. The act or operation of melting.
  • n. The quantity melted at a single operation or in one period.
  • n. A usually open sandwich topped with melted cheese: a tuna melt.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Molten material, the product of melting.
  • n. The transition of matter from a solid state to a liquid state.
  • n. The springtime snow runoff in mountain regions.
  • n. A melt sandwich.
  • n. A wax-based substance for use in an oil burner as an alternative to mixing oils and water.
  • n. an idiot.
  • v. To change (or to be changed) from a solid state to a liquid state, usually by a gradual heat.
  • v. To dissolve, disperse, vanish.
  • v. To be very hot and sweat profusely.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. See 2d milt.
  • intransitive v. To be changed from a solid to a liquid state under the influence of heat.
  • intransitive v. To dissolve.
  • intransitive v. To be softened; to become tender, mild, or gentle; also, to be weakened or subdued, as by fear.
  • intransitive v. To lose distinct form or outline; to blend. See fondue.
  • intransitive v. To disappear by being dispersed or dissipated.
  • transitive v. To reduce from a solid to a liquid state, as by heat; to liquefy
  • transitive v. To soften, as by a warming or kindly influence; to relax; to render gentle or susceptible to mild influences; sometimes, in a bad sense, to take away the firmness of; to weaken.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To become liquid through heat; be changed from a fixed or solid to a flowing state by heat.
  • To suffer dissolution or extinction; be dissipated or wasted.
  • To be softened to love, pity, tenderness, sympathy, or the like; become tender, mild, or gentle.
  • To be weakened or broken; be subdued, as by fear.
  • To pass, as one thing into another, so that the point of junction is imperceptible; pass by imperceptible degrees; blend; shade.
  • To reduce from a solid to a fluid state by means of heat; liquefy; fuse: as, to melt iron, lead, wax, or tallow; to melt ice.
  • Loosely, to make a solution of; liquefy by solution; dissolve: as, to melt sugar in water.—
  • Figuratively, to soften, as by a warming and kindly influence; render gentle or susceptible to mild influences, as to love, pity, or tenderness.
  • Synonyms To mollify, subdue; Melt, Dissolve, Thaw, Fuse. Two words, … popularly confounded, though scientifically very distinct, are melt and dissolve. The former signifies to bring a substance from a solid to a liquid condition by the agency of heat alone; the latter signifies the bringing about of this result by distributing the particles of the substance acted on among the particles of another substance which is itself liquid, and this process is termed the solution of the solid substance. Thaw differs from melt, in being applicable only to substances whose ordinary condition is that of a liquid, and which have become solid in consequence of the abstraction of heat, and therefore return to the liquid condition as if of themselves. (Chambers's Journal.) Dissolve is much used as a synonym of either melt or thaw. Fuse is sometimes synonymous with melt (as, to fuse a wire by electricity), but it is more often used of melting together: as, bell-metal is made by fusing copper and tin. See the definitions of these words.
  • n. The melting of metal; the running down of the metal in the act of fusion.
  • n. The charge of metals placed in a cupola or pot for melting.
  • n. Any substance that is melted.
  • n. Same as milt.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. become or cause to become soft or liquid
  • v. become less intense and fade away gradually
  • n. the process whereby heat changes something from a solid to a liquid
  • v. reduce or cause to be reduced from a solid to a liquid state, usually by heating
  • v. become more relaxed, easygoing, or genial
  • v. become less clearly visible or distinguishable; disappear gradually or seemingly
  • v. lose its distinct outline or shape; blend gradually

Etymologies

Middle English melten, from Old English meltan.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old English meltan. (Wiktionary)

Examples

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Smälter som barnskit i munnen - Melts like childshit in your mouth.

    Swedish saying for "when something is really good! Mmmm, just imagine."
    - kulturCHOCK!

    September 26, 2009