American English

Definition of temper noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[countable, usually singular, uncountable] if someone has a temper, they become angry very easily a violent/short/quick, etc. temper He must learn to control his temper. She broke the plates in a fit of temper. After an hour of waiting,tempers began to fray (= people began to get angry).
  2. 2[countable, usually singular] a short period of feeling very angry to fly into a temper Some small children have terrible temper tantrums.
  3. 3[countable] the way that you are feeling at a particular time synonym mood Come back when you're in a better temper. to be in a bad, foul, etc. temper
  4. 4-tempered (in adjectives) having a particular type of temper good-/bad-tempered a sweet-tempered child You will find other compounds ending in -tempered at their place in the alphabet.
  5. Idioms
    lose/keep your temper (with somebody)
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    to fail/manage to control your anger She lost her temper with a customer and shouted at him. I struggle to keep my temper with the kids when they misbehave.
    to have a quick temper
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    to become angry easily
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: temper