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Etymology 1Edit

From Middle Dutch and/or Middle Low German stove (compare Dutch stoof), possibly from Proto-Germanic *stubō (room, living room, heated room), or borrowed from Romance. Cognate with Old High German stuba (whence German Stube), Old English stofa, stofu (bathroom, bathhouse), Old Norse stofa (whence Icelandic stofa (living room), Norwegian stove and Danish and Norwegian stue and Swedish stuga).


stove (plural stoves)

  1. A heater, a closed apparatus to burn fuel for the warming of a room.
    • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, chapter 8, in Mr. Pratt's Patients:
      We toted in the wood and got the fire going nice and comfortable. Lord James still set in one of the chairs and Applegate had cabbaged the other and was hugging the stove.
  2. A device for heating food, (UK) a cooker.
  3. (chiefly Britain) A hothouse (heated greenhouse).
    • 1850, M. A. Burnett, Plantae utiliores: or illustrations of useful plants, employed in the arts and medicine, part 8:
      There existed only one specimen of this sacred tree in all Mexico, at least to the knowledge of the Mexicans; [] In spite, however, of the firmest convictions of the indivisibility of this tree — the Manitas, as it is commonly called — it has been propagated by cuttings, some of which are at this moment thriving in some of the larger stoves of our modern collectors.
    • 1854, in The Horticultural Review and Botanical Magazine, volume 4, page 208:
      Let but these facts lie contrasted with the treatment they usually receive in the stoves of this country, and the reason why they never grow to any considerable size, attain to any degree of perfection, or flourish to any extent []
  4. (dated) A house or room artificially warmed or heated.
    • Earl of Strafford
      When most of the waiters were commanded away to their supper, the parlour or stove being nearly emptied, in came a company of musketeers.
    • Burton
      How tedious is it to them that live in stoves and caves half a year together, as in Iceland, Muscovy, or under the pole!
Derived termsEdit


stove (third-person singular simple present stoves, present participle stoving, simple past and past participle stoved)

  1. (transitive) To heat or dry, as in a stove.
    to stove feathers
  2. (transitive) To keep warm, in a house or room, by artificial heat.
    to stove orange trees
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Francis Bacon to this entry?)


Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for stove in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)

Etymology 2Edit



  1. simple past tense and past participle of stave
    a stove boat
    • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby-Dick, chapters 7 and 36:
      [A]ye, a stove boat will make me an immortal by brevet.
      "A dead whale or a stove boat!"