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

  • transitive v. To cook (food) by simmering or boiling slowly.
  • intransitive v. To undergo cooking by boiling slowly or simmering. See Synonyms at boil1.
  • intransitive v. Informal To suffer with oppressive heat or stuffy confinement; swelter.
  • intransitive v. Informal To be in a state of anxiety or agitation. See Synonyms at brood.
  • n. A dish cooked by stewing, especially a mixture of meat or fish and vegetables with stock.
  • n. A mixture likened to this dish.
  • n. Informal Mental agitation: in a stew over the lost keys.
  • n. Archaic A brothel. Often used in the plural.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A prostitute.
  • n. A pool in which fish are kept in preparation for eating.
  • n. A state of agitated excitement, worry, and/or confusion.
  • v. To cook (food) by slowly boiling or simmering.
  • v. To brew (tea) for too long, so that the flavour becomes too strong.
  • v. To suffer under uncomfortably hot conditions.
  • v. To be in a state of elevated anxiety or anger.
  • n. A steward or stewardess on an airplane.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A small pond or pool where fish are kept for the table; a vivarium.
  • n. An artificial bed of oysters.
  • n. A place of stewing or seething; a place where hot bathes are furnished; a hothouse.
  • n. A brothel; -- usually in the plural.
  • n. A prostitute.
  • n. A dish prepared by stewing.
  • n. A state of agitating excitement; a state of worry; confusion.
  • intransitive v. To be seethed or cooked in a slow, gentle manner, or in heat and moisture.
  • transitive v. To boil slowly, or with the simmering or moderate heat; to seethe; to cook in a little liquid, over a gentle fire, without boiling.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To bathe, as in a liquid or a vapor-bath.
  • Figuratively, to steep.
  • To cook (food) by simmering or slowly boiling; prepare by cooking in a liquid kept at the simmering-point: as, to stew meat or fruit; to stew oysters.
  • To be cooked by slowly simmering.
  • A Middle English variant of stow.
  • n. A heated room, especially such a room for bathing purposes; a hothouse; a stove.
  • n. Specifically, a hatters' drying-room.
  • n. A room; a chamber; a closet.
  • n. A brothel; a bagnio: often used in the plural, sometimes with the force of a singular noun.
  • n. A lock hospital. See hospital.
  • n. A prostitute: sometimes in the plural form with a singular meaning.
  • n. A close vessel in which something is cooked or stewed; a stew-pot or stew-pan.
  • n. Food cooked by stewing; especially, meat or fish prepared by slow cooking in a liquid.
  • n. A state of agitation or ferment; mental disturbance; worry; fuss.
  • n. A pond, usually artificial, used for domestic purposes; especially, a pool or tank in which fish are kept until needed for the table; a vivarium; a stew-pond.
  • n. A breeding-place for tame pheasants.
  • n. An artificial bed of oysters: used of the old Roman and also of the modern methods of fattening.
  • n. Dust; a cloud of dust, smoke, or vapor.

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

  • v. be in a huff; be silent or sullen
  • v. bear a grudge; harbor ill feelings
  • n. agitation resulting from active worry
  • n. food prepared by stewing especially meat or fish with vegetables
  • v. cook slowly and for a long time in liquid


Middle English stewen, to bathe in a steam bath, stew, from Old French estuver, possibly from Vulgar Latin *extūpāre, *extūfāre, to bathe, evaporate : Latin ex-, ex- + Vulgar Latin *tūfus, hot vapor (from Greek tūphos, fever; see typhus).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old French estuve (modern French étuve), from Medieval Latin stupha, perhaps ultimately from Ancient Greek τῦφος ("smoke, steam"). (Wiktionary)
Abbreviation (Wiktionary)



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