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

  • adj. Mildly warm; tepid.
  • adj. Lacking conviction or enthusiasm; indifferent: gave only lukewarm support to the incumbent candidate.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of a temperature between warm and cool.
  • adj. Not very enthusiastic (about a proposal or an idea).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Moderately warm; neither cold nor hot; tepid.
  • adj. Not ardent; not zealous; cool; indifferent.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Only moderately warm; tepid; neither cold nor hot.
  • Not ardent; not zealous; cool; indifferent: as, lukewarm obedience.

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

  • adj. moderately warm
  • adj. feeling or showing little interest or enthusiasm


Middle English leukwarm : leuk, luke (possibly alteration of leu, from Old English hlēow) + warm, warm; see warm.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English lukewarme ("lukewarm, tepid"), equivalent to luke (“lukewarm”) +‎ warm. First element believed to be an alteration of Middle English lew ("tepid"), from Old English hlēow ("warm, sunny"), from Proto-Germanic *hliwjaz, *hlēwaz, *hlūmaz, *hleumaz (“warm”), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱal(w)e-, *ḱel(w)e-, *k(')lēw- (“warm, hot”). Cognate with Dutch lauw ("tepid"), German lauwarm ("lukewarm"), Faroese lýggjur ("warm"), Swedish ljum ("lukewarm"), ljummen ("lukewarm") and ly ("warm"), Danish lummer ("muggy"), Danish and Norwegian lunken ("tepid"), Swedish dialectal ljummen ("lukwarm"). (Wiktionary)



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