Definition of seethe in English:



[no object]
  • 1(of a liquid) boil or be turbulent as if boiling.

    ‘the grey ocean seethed’
    boil, bubble, simmer, foam, froth, rise, ferment, fizz, effervesce
    teem, swarm, boil, bubble, foam, ferment, swirl, convulse, churn, whirl, surge
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    1. 1.1archaic with object Cook (food) by boiling it in a liquid.
      ‘others were cut into joints and seethed in cauldrons made of the animal's own skins’
  • 2(of a person) be filled with intense but unexpressed anger.

    ‘inwardly he was seething at the slight to his authority’
    • ‘Inwardly he was seething with rage against himself.’
    • ‘I was seething with bitterness and rage as I placed Golf Digest back on the table.’
    • ‘In Wrexham, I was seething at the injustice of it all.’
    • ‘Staring after him, still seething with rage, I breathed heavily.’
    • ‘I am seething with rage at anyone who dares suggest that, in any way, such acts are even explicable, let alone justifiable.’
    • ‘The hostile-attribution bias, which kicks in when you're seething with anger, makes matters worse.’
    • ‘On the walk back to the tent with Liz, Gina inwardly seethed.’
    • ‘I can either seethe with jealousy or you can be my new hero.’
    • ‘He also breaks down and makes a startling admission that will have fans of the book seething with anger.’
    • ‘His voice was cool, but she knew he was seething with rage.’
    • ‘Samantha seethed inwardly, and Bryce, watching her, saw her pout return.’
    • ‘The product of a broken home, Tim seethes with a silent rage that manifests itself in exceedingly destructive ways.’
    • ‘I recall he listened rather impassively, but it was not until he saw me next week in the office that I realized he was seething with anger.’
    • ‘She was seething, but her anger was frighteningly under control.’
    • ‘I'm practically seething with anger before I'm even halfway through this old lady's cart of Christmas ornaments.’
    • ‘Once upon a time, I would have ducked my head and seethed privately.’
    • ‘He paused, noticing that Devon was still seething with anger about Officer Sizemore.’
    • ‘‘He was seething,’ one of the Afghan commanders said.’
    • ‘The country is seething with resentment against alternately corrupt civil and military governments.’
    • ‘Amy seethed with anger on the inside, but forced herself to smile.’
    be angry, be furious, be enraged, be incensed, be infuriated, be beside oneself, have lost one's temper, have a fit, throw a fit, boil, simmer, be boiling over, chafe, rage, be in a rage, rant, rave, rant and rave, storm, fume, smoulder, spit, breathe fire, burn
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  • 3(of a place) be crowded with people or things moving about in a rapid or hectic way.

    ‘the entire cellar was seething with spiders’
    • ‘Vienna was a city seething with officials from newly placed international organisations.’
    • ‘The marine environment seethes with a jumble of signals.’
    1. 3.1with adverbial of direction (of a crowd of people) move in a rapid or hectic way.
      ‘we cascaded down the stairs and seethed across the station’
      ‘the seething mass of commuters’
      • ‘Anyone who drove down Jomtien Beach Road on the next morning could not help but be impressed that the seething mass from the night before had apparently disappeared without a trace.’
      • ‘One moment there was an expanse of green grass, and then, as if by magic, there was a seething, moving mass of blue and white, moving, singing, and embracing, as players struggled to reach the stand.’
      • ‘She had plunged her hand into the dirty washing basket, only to a find it a seething black mass of ants, attracted by my son's ice-lolly-soaked T-shirt.’
      • ‘There's a rich irony in the fact that we load our supermarket trolleys with antibacterial cleaners when we ourselves are seething masses of bacteria of endless variety.’


Old English sēothan ‘make or keep boiling’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch zieden.