Definition of estufa in US English:



  • 1A heated chamber in which Madeira wine is stored and matured.

    • ‘Special inspectors place thermostatic seals on each estufa, and if the temperature becomes too high the seal is automatically broken and the wine is then confiscated.’
    • ‘Some of the smaller shippers and stockholders refuse to resort to the estufa to age their wines.’
  • 2US An underground chamber in which a fire is kept permanently alight, used as a place of assembly by Pueblo Indians.

    • ‘Each pueblo contains an estufa, which is used both as a council chamber and a place of worship.’
    • ‘Montezuma placed his sacred fire in the estufa, and warned his people that death would come upon them if they allowed it to go out.’


Mid 19th century: from Spanish, probably based on Greek tuphos ‘steam or smoke’.