Definition of weather noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈweðə(r)//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈweðər//
    [uncountable] The Earth and the atmosphere, Journalism
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  1. 1  the condition of the atmosphere at a particular place and time, such as the temperature, and if there is wind, rain, sun, etc. hot/cold/wet/fine/summer/windy, etc. weather Did you have good weather on your trip? I'm not going out in this weather! There's going to be a change in the weather. if the weather holds/breaks (= if the good weather continues/changes) The weather is very changeable at the moment. ‘Are you going to the beach tomorrow?’ ‘It depends on the weather.’ We'll have the party outside, weather permitting (= if it doesn't rain). a weather map/chart a weather report The tent protected us from the worst of the weather. CollocationsThe weatherGood weather be bathed in/​bask in/​be blessed with/​enjoy bright/​brilliant/​glorious sunshine the sun shines/​warms something/​beats down (on something) the sunshine breaks/​streams through something fluffy/​wispy clouds drift across the sky a gentle/​light/​stiff/​cool/​warm/​sea breeze blows in/​comes in off the sea the snow crunches beneath/​under somebody’s feet/​bootsBad weather thick/​dark/​storm clouds form/​gather/​roll in/​cover the sky/​block out the sun the sky darkens/​turns black a fine mist hangs in the air a dense/​heavy/​thick fog rolls in the rain falls/​comes down (in buckets/​sheets)/pours down snow falls/​comes down/​covers something the wind blows/​whistles/​howls/​picks up/​whips through something/​sweeps across something strong/​gale-force winds blow/​gust (up to 80 mph) a storm is approaching/​is moving inland/​hits/​strikes/​rages thunder rolls/​rumbles/​sounds (forked/​sheet) lightning strikes/​hits/​flashes a (blinding/​snow) blizzard hits/​strikes/​blows/​rages a tornado touches down/​hits/​strikes/​destroys something/​rips through something forecast/​expect/​predict rain/​snow/​a category-four hurricane (North American English) pour (down)/ (British English) pour (down) with rain get caught in/​seek shelter from/​escape the rain be covered/​shrouded in mist/​a blanket of fog be in for/​brave/​shelter from a/​the storm hear rolling/​distant thunder be battered/​buffeted by strong winds (British English) be blowing a gale battle against/​brave the elementsThe weather improves the sun breaks through the clouds the sky clears/​brightens (up)/lightens (up) the clouds part/​clear the rain stops/​lets up/​holds off the wind dies down the storm passes the mist/​fog lifts/​clears See related entries: The Earth and the atmosphere
  2. 2  the weather (informal) a report of what the weather will be like, that is on the radio or television, or in the newspapers to listen to the weather See related entries: Journalism
  3. Word OriginOld English weder, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch weer and German Wetter, probably also to the noun wind1. CultureweatherThe popular view of the British weather is that it rains all the time. This is not true and Britain gets no more rain in an average year than several other European countries. In some summers the country goes for weeks with nothing more than a shower (= short period of rain). Perhaps the main characteristic of Britain's weather is that it is hard to predict. This is probably why people regularly listen to weather forecasts on radio and television. However, the weather forecasters are sometimes wrong.The British are not used to extremes. In summer the temperature rarely goes higher than 30°C (86° F). Heatwaves (= periods of very hot weather) are greeted with newspaper headlines such as ‘Phew! What a scorcher!’ In winter the south and west are fairly mild (= warm). The east and north get much colder, with hard frosts and snow. A cold snap (= period of very cold weather) or heavy falls of snow can bring transport to a halt.Samuel Johnson observed that ‘when two Englishmen meet their first talk is of the weather’, and this is still true. The weather is a safe, polite and impersonal topic of conversation. Most British people would agree that bright sunny weather, not too hot and with enough rain to water their gardens, is good. Bad weather usually means dull days with a lot of cloud and rain or, in winter, fog or snow. The British tend to expect the worst as far as the weather is concerned and it is part of national folklore (= traditional belief) that summer bank holidays will be wet. It may be pouring with rain, teeming down, bucketing, or even just drizzling or spitting, but it will be wet.The US is large enough to have several different climates, and so the weather varies between regions. In winter the temperature in New York state is often −8° C (17° F) or lower; in the summer in Arizona it is often above 40° C (104° F). Arizona gets less than an inch/2.5 centimetres of rain most months; the state of Washington, DC can get 6 inches/15 centimetres. The Northeast and Midwest have cold winters with a lot of snow, and summers that are very hot and humid (= with a lot of water in the air). The South has hot, humid summers but moderate winters. The Southwest, including Arizona and New Mexico, is dry and warm in the winter and very hot in the summer. Some parts of the US suffer tornadoes (= strong circular winds) and hurricanes.In autumn people put storm doors and windows on their houses, an extra layer of glass to keep out the cold wind. Cities in the snow belt (= the north eastern and midwestern states that get a lot of snow) have several snow days each winter, days when people do not go to school or work. But then snow ploughs clear the roads and life goes on, even when the weather is bad.In the US it is considered boring to talk about the weather, but some phrases are often heard. In the summer people ask, ‘Is it hot enough for you?’ or say that the street is ‘hot enough to fry an egg’. When it rains they say ‘Nice day if you're a duck’, or that they do not mind the rain because ‘the farmers need it’.Many people in Britain and the US, as elsewhere, are worried about global warming (= an increase in temperature in the earth's atmosphere) due to emissions from vehicles and factories of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrous oxide (N2O) and any climatic changes this may cause.Extra examples Atlantic weather systems Bad weather threatened. Deciding to brave the weather, he grabbed his umbrella and went out. He swims in the sea every day, whatever the weather. I checked the weather this morning. I sat outside as often as the weather allowed. I wanted to mend the roof before the cold weather set in. I’ve been enjoying this beautiful weather. If the weather holds out we could go swimming later. It was sunny until the weekend, but then the weather broke. Next day the weather turned cold. She packed all kinds of clothes to cope with the vagaries of the English weather. She packed to cope with the vagaries of New York’s weather. Stormy weather prevented any play in today’s tennis. The fine weather brings out butterflies. The lifeboat crews go out in all weather(s). The plane crashed into the sea in adverse weather conditions. The weather closed in and the climbers had to take shelter. The weather looks beautiful today. We hadn’t bargained for such a dramatic change in the weather. We’ll go just as soon as this weather lets up. We’re having a barbecue next Saturday, weather permitting. We’ve had great weather all week. a spell of unseasonably warm weather. a spell of unseasonally wet weather. an increase in extreme weather events the effects of global warming on the world’s weather patterns And now for the weather. I don’t know whether we’ll go—it depends on the weather. I’m not going out in this weather! The weather was awful. There’s going to be a change in the weather. We’ll have lunch outside, weather permitting. a weather map/​chart/​report if the weather holds/​breaks wet/​fine/​summer/​windy weatherIdioms
    brass monkeys, brass monkey weather
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    (British English, slang) if you say that it is brass monkeys or brass monkey weather, you mean that it is very cold weather
    in all kinds of weather, good and bad She goes out jogging in all weathers.
    keep a weather eye on somebody/something
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    to watch somebody/something carefully in case you need to take action Keep a weather eye on your competitors.
    make heavy weather of something
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    to seem to find something more difficult or complicated than it needs to be People in this country make such heavy weather of learning languages.
    (informal) if you are or feel under the weather, you feel slightly ill/sick and not as well as usual See related entries: Being ill
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: weather