deriving destructive energy from releasing atomic energy
Literally, anything nuclear refers to the nucleus of an atom. Nuclear energy comes from splitting the atom, and that's why you see references to nuclear weapons, nuclear power plants, and nuclear scientists. However, sometimes this term is used a bit more loosely. When an argument gets out of hand, it goes nuclear, and when the temperatures rise to preposterous degrees, you can say the weather has also reached nuclear levels.
excessively hot and humid; marked by sweating and faintness
Since the 1600s,
sweltering has been a word for excessive heat. The Oxford English Dictionary describes it as, "Oppressive or overpowering with great heat; causing or accompanied by profuse sweating or suffocation through extreme heat." That's right: sweltering heat is so bad you might not even be able to breathe, literally. Sweltering isn't swell.
hot and humid
This refers to countries around the Earth's equator: the tropics. These areas, far from the chilly North and South poles, have the opposite weather: hot and steamy. This is why tropical nations such as Jamaica and the Bahamas are popular vacation spots, and it's also why
tropical is a synonym for hot weather.
containing or characterized by a great deal of water vapor
“For example, in a warming world, we anticipate more unbearably
days,” he said.Slate (Jul 5, 2017)
One of the most annoying summer phrases—along with "Hot enough for ya?"—is "It's not the heat, it's the humidity." When humidity is high, the weather is
humid. High humidity means there's a lot of moisture in the air, and when humidity reaches 100%, Mother Nature makes it rain.
hot or warm and humid
The ocean breeze swept away the
heat of the summer afternoon, and it was pleasantly cool under the shade of the palmetto trees.The Mark of Athena
Muggy has been around since at least the 1700s. Another word used for humid or muggy weather is
sticky, in reference to the sweat-soaked shirts and other garments that can make summer so uncomfortable. It's one thing to be sweaty after playing basketball or ripping phone books. It's another thing to be drenched in sweat just standing there, because of monumental mugginess.
weighing heavily on the senses or spirit
But 50 years ago she was a pre-teen, sleeping on the porch to escape the
heat, awakening to see a sky that glowed unnaturally.Seattle Times (Jul 15, 2017)
This word usually refers to tyrannical governments that crush their people's spirits. Anything oppressive pushes down from above, which may explain why people often describe the heat as
oppressive when the sun feels like the enemy, because it's just so flippin' hot. If the heat is oppressive, it's wearing down your body and spirit. Seek an air conditioner immediately.
become singed under intense heat or dry conditions
This weekend, despite
temperatures, they contained the majority of the 20 more significant wildfires at a few thousand acres.Los Angeles Times (Jul 11, 2017)
not in keeping with (and usually undesirable for) the season
warmth is part of a center of warm air shifting north across portions of the western United States, the National Weather Service said.Reuters (Apr 7, 2016)
mild and pleasant
hot or warm and humid
It was a
summer day in New York in 2009 when Luke Holden, an investment banker, had a craving for a lobster roll.New York Times (Aug 24, 2016)
characterized by oppressive heat and humidity
Arizona is seeing the most
temperatures, but the wrath of the heat wave is being felt across Nevada and California as well.Seattle Times (Jun 20, 2017)
causing difficulty in breathing especially through lack of fresh air and presence of heat
hot enough to raise (or as if to raise) blisters
After a weekend of
heat, firefighters will face additional weather-related complications, according to the National Weather Service.Los Angeles Times (Jul 10, 2017)