General English


  • Frozen water sometimes used in place of water where intense agitation or prolonged processing might overheat a mixture. The energy necessary to melt ice would heat the same mass of water by 80°C. Also used for cooling.


  • noun diamonds or other jewellery. An underworld term in all English-speaking areas, this word has also been heard in everyday speech.
  • noun an illicit drug which appeared in Hawaii in 1989 and for a time seemed poised to replace crack as a major social scourge in the USA. Ice is a highly synthesised version of methamphetamine (the archetypal speed as abused in the 1960s and 1970s under the name of methedrine).
  • verb to kill. An American underworld term which may initially have been a shortened form of ‘put someone on ice’. The word has been popularised by its use in crime films and TV series.


  • noun ice cream
  • noun frozen water, as a surface for e.g. skating
  • verb to add ice to something, such as a drink
  • verb to put icing on a cake


  • acronym forInternational Cometary Explorer
    (written as ICE)

Cars & Driving

  • acronym forin-car entertainment
    (written as ICE)
  • noun a car audio system, typically consisting of a radio/cassette player and perhaps a CD player.


  • acronym forIntercontinental Exchange
    (written as ICE)


  • acronym forin-circuit emulator
    (written as ICE)
  • acronym forInformation and Content Exchange
    (written as ICE)

Origin & History of “ice”

Ice is a widespread word among the Germanic languages – German has eis, for instance. Dutch ijs, and Swedish and Danish is – but beyond that its connections are somewhat dubious. some of the more easterly Indo-European languages have or had similar-looking forms, including Old Iranian isu- ‘frosty, icy’, modern Iranian yak ‘ice’, and Afghan asaī ‘frost’, which suggest the possibility of a common source.

Iceberg (18th c.) was perhaps an adaptation of Danish and Norwegian isberg, literally ‘ice mountain’.