From Middle English sweltren, swaltren, frequentative form of Middle English swelten (“to die; faint”), from Old English sweltan (“to die”), from Proto-Germanic *sweltaną (“to die”), from Proto-Indo-European *swel- (“to smolder; burn”), equivalent to swelt + -er (frequentative suffix). More at swelt.
- (intransitive) To suffer terribly from intense heat.
- (Can we find and add a quotation of Samuel Taylor Coleridge to this entry?)
- (intransitive) To perspire greatly from heat.
swelter (plural swelters)
- Intense heat.
- The summer swelter did not relent until late in September, most years.