from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A vast semiarid grass-covered plain, as found in southeast Europe, Siberia, and central North America.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In phytogeography, xerophilous grassland. This formation as met, with at high elevations is distinguished as alpine steppe.
  • noun A more or less level tract devoid of trees: a name given to certain parts of European and Asiatic Russia, of which the most characteristic feature is the absence of forests.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun One of the vast plains in Southeastern Europe and in Asia, generally elevated, and free from wood, analogous to many of the prairies in Western North America. See savanna.
  • noun (Far.) See Rinderpest.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The grasslands of Eastern Europe and Asia. Similar to (US) prairie and (African) savannah.
  • noun More properly, the name given vast cold, dry grass-plains.

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

  • noun extensive plain without trees (associated with eastern Russia and Siberia)


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

[German, from Russian step'.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

1671. From German or French, in turn from Russian степь (step’, "flat grassy plain") or Ukrainian степ (step). There is no generally accepted earlier etymology, but there is a speculative Old East Slavic reconstruction *сътепь (sъtep’), related to топот (tópot), топтать (toptát’).


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