from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A vacuum bottle used to keep beverages hot or cold.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun a vacuum flask or bottle which can keep liquids at a desired temperature.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun vacuum flask that preserves temperature of hot or cold drinks


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Originally a trademark.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Thermos, a trademarked name, from Ancient Greek θερμός (thermos, "warm")


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  • The lid of the thermos is an isolated seal, the normal jar comes with a screwtop.

    Bento loot! « Were rabbits 2007

  • For a minimalist this guy seems to really like having every color tank top available, even coffee. but maybe that is an actual coffee tank, aka thermos? not to mention his veritible calvelcade of neckways tank, V, crew. also, I like the way he qualifies his wallet as a minimalist wallet. is a wallet really such a big extravagance?

    The New Smugness: Keeping it to a Minimum BikeSnobNYC 2010

  • In 1898 the Scottish scientist James Dewar (1842-1923), also remembered for his invention of the vacuum flask known as the thermos with its valuable heat-preserving properties, beat him in the race to liquefy hydrogen.

    Gates of Vienna Baron Bodissey 2010

  • My thermos is a red Donald Duck I've had for years.

    Guernica Magazine 2010

  • If you are working through lunch, Pimm's in your thermos is a guerrilla tactic for sneaking summer into the office - or homemade lemonade for the responsible.

    The Guardian World News 2010

  • A gas canister and a kettle so you can make a hot brew, plus a thermos will be your best friends up there.

    SofiaEcho RSS feed 2009

  • The thermos is a brand new one I won in a random drawing at the last "let's all be friends and work together in an annoyingly close way" workshop we had at the library.

    Bluestalking 2008

  • I guess people will do anything for a free cocktail or a free Y-3 thermos which is what they were giving out as thank you gifts.

    Joey Jalleo: Inside Fashion Week: Calgon!!! Take Me Away! 2008

  • Avail yourself of the opportunity to repeatedly touch anything "clickable," such as thermos lids or elevator buttons.

    Original Signal - Transmitting Web 2.0 2009

  • On his desk he kept a thermos of hot espresso that he brought fresh from home daily.

    Kill the Irishman Rick Porrello 2011


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  • Was/is this a brand name rather than a generic name?

    December 5, 2008

  • Yes, it's a brand name, but I believe it's used by some as a generic term for an insulated vacuum flask.

    Also, as I'm sure you know, it was long ago a sanctuary for the Aetolian League.

    December 5, 2008

  • Indeed it is. It belongs to the same rhetorical class as kleenex and bandaid and esky but it's too early in the morning for me to recall what that's called.

    December 5, 2008

  • Chained_bear has a Trade Names list. Plenty of comments there but not much about the phenomenon itself.

    December 5, 2008

  • Hot damn. I never knew that about thermos. Thanks!

    December 5, 2008

  • I'm jealous of c_b's list. I think of additions darn near every day, then forget them almost immediately before I have a chance to go there.

    December 5, 2008

  • I was updating my list and in the process, did that three times. Apparently I have no short-term memory whatsoever.

    Hey! I should add thermos to my list!

    December 5, 2008

  • Metafilter wondered too: Question on generic terminology

    Wikipedia has an article on the genericized trademark

    And the word might be antonomasia.

    December 5, 2008

  • yes; according to Abraxis -come back all is forgiven- Zugzwang, the word is antonomasia (see his comment on c_b's list)

    December 5, 2008

  • *singing* "I'm going to buy a Thermos for you... No ordinary Thermos for you..." *sits in tub and squirts water into the air with hands*

    December 5, 2008

  • Hey, thanks for posting. I didn't know about thermos. I'll have to add that to my list.

    December 6, 2008

  • Hey c_b, did you know that Dara Torres has a thermos that's 41 years old?

    December 6, 2008

  • What? No!

    December 6, 2008

  • Do you think the soup's still warm?

    December 6, 2008

  • Not if it didn't take into account the turn before the gate and the fact that Torres' feet touched the white tape.

    December 8, 2008

  • It's the same deduction of heat no matter where the soup landed, which is tricky, particularly on a turn.

    December 8, 2008