Student Dictionary

One entry found for climate.
Main Entry: cli·mate
Pronunciation: primarystressklimacr-mschwat
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English climat "climate," from early French climat (same meaning), from Latin climat-, clima (same meaning), from Greek klimat-, klima "slope, latitude, climate," from klinein "to lean, recline" --related to CLIMAX, CLINIC
1 a : a region with specified weather conditions b : the average weather conditions of a particular place or region over a period of years
2 : the usual or most widespread mood or conditions <a climate of fear>
- cli·mat·ic /klimacr-primarystressmat-ik, klschwa-/ adjective
Word History The ancient Greeks believed that the earth sloped from the equator to the north pole. They thought that this sloping caused the different weather conditions found in different regions of the world. Therefore they called each of the regions a klima, which was also the word for "slope" or "inclination." Klima was borrowed into Latin as clima, and from Latin it was taken into French where it was spelled climat. In English it became climate, a word which we now use more often to mean the weather conditions themselves than the region where they occur.

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