boil down

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boil 1

v. boiled, boil·ing, boils
a. To change from a liquid to a vapor by the application of heat: All the water boiled away and left the kettle dry.
b. To reach the boiling point.
c. To undergo the action of boiling, especially in being cooked.
2. To be in a state of agitation; seethe: a river boiling over the rocks.
3. To be stirred up or greatly excited, especially in anger: The mere idea made me boil.
a. To vaporize (a liquid) by the application of heat.
b. To heat to the boiling point.
2. To cook or clean by boiling.
3. To separate by evaporation in the process of boiling: boil the maple sap.
1. The condition or act of boiling.
2. Lower Southern US A picnic featuring shrimp, crab, or crayfish boiled in large pots with spices, and then shelled and eaten by hand.
3. An agitated, swirling, roiling mass of liquid: "Those tumbling boils show a dissolving bar and a changing channel there" (Mark Twain).
Phrasal Verbs:
boil down
1. To reduce in bulk or size by boiling.
2. To condense; summarize: boiled down the complex document.
3. To constitute the equivalent of in summary: The scathing editorial simply boils down to an exercise in partisan politics.
boil over
1. To overflow while boiling.
2. To lose one's temper.

[Middle English boillen, from Old French boillir, from Latin bullīre, from bulla, bubble.]

boil′a·ble adj.
Synonyms: boil1, simmer, seethe, stew
These verbs mean, both literally and figuratively, to stir up or agitate. To boil is to heat a liquid until it churns with bubbles. Figuratively it pertains to intense agitation, often from anger: She boiled with rage at the insult.
Simmer denotes gentle cooking just at or below the boiling point. Figuratively it refers to a state of slow, contained ferment: Plans were simmering in his mind. The employees simmered with resentment over the cut in benefits.
To seethe is to boil steadily and vigorously. Its figurative usage can suggest vigorous activity or passionate emotion: "The arc lamp's cone of light seethes with winged insects" (Claire Davis)."The city had ... been seething with discontent" (John R. Green).
Stew refers literally to slow boiling and figuratively to a persistent but not violent state of agitation: "They don't want a man to fret and stew about his work" (William H. Whyte, Jr.).

boil 2

A painful, circumscribed pus-filled inflammation of the skin and subcutaneous tissue usually caused by a local staphylococcal infection. Also called furuncle.

[Middle English bile, from Old English bȳle.]

boil down

vb (adverb)
1. (Chemistry) to reduce or be reduced in quantity and usually altered in consistency by boiling: to boil a liquid down to a thick glue.
2. boil down to
a. (intr) to be the essential element in something
b. (tr) to summarize; reduce to essentials
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.boil down - be the essential element; "The proposal boils down to a compromise"
become, turn - undergo a change or development; "The water turned into ice"; "Her former friend became her worst enemy"; "He turned traitor"
2.boil down - be cooked until very little liquid is left; "The sauce should reduce to one cup"
cookery, cooking, preparation - the act of preparing something (as food) by the application of heat; "cooking can be a great art"; "people are needed who have experience in cookery"; "he left the preparation of meals to his wife"
decrease, diminish, lessen, fall - decrease in size, extent, or range; "The amount of homework decreased towards the end of the semester"; "The cabin pressure fell dramatically"; "her weight fell to under a hundred pounds"; "his voice fell to a whisper"
3.boil down - cook until very little liquid is left; "The cook reduced the sauce by boiling it for a long time"
cookery, cooking, preparation - the act of preparing something (as food) by the application of heat; "cooking can be a great art"; "people are needed who have experience in cookery"; "he left the preparation of meals to his wife"
minify, decrease, lessen - make smaller; "He decreased his staff"


1. To cook (food) in liquid heated to the point of steaming:
2. To be in a state of emotional or mental turmoil:
phrasal verb
boil away
To pass off as vapor, especially when heated:
phrasal verb
boil down
To reduce in complexity or scope:
phrasal verb
boil over
To be or become angry:
Informal: steam.
Idioms: blow a fuse, blow a gasket, blow one's stack, breathe fire, fly off the handle, get hot under the collar, hit the ceiling, lose one's temper, see red.

w>boil down

vt sepeinkochen
(jam etc)dickflüssig werden
(fig) to boil down to somethingauf etw (acc)hinauslaufen; what it boils down to is that …das läuft darauf hinaus, dass …
References in periodicals archive ?
But it will all boil down to the same thing - pressure.
Gavin (pictued left) has admitted defeat in his battle to boil down to the 60kg lightweight limit and has flown home to Birmingham today after leaving the team's holding camp in Macau, where he had been left behind in order to make one final push.
In a city with infamously dismal public services, it's discouraging that the most promising proposal for improving those services seems to boil down to: Pay for them yourself.