verb[no object] (teem with)
- Be full of or swarming with: every garden is teeming with wildlife (as adjective teeming) she walked briskly through the teeming streetsMore example sentences
be full of, be filled with, be alive with, be brimming with, be overflowing with, abound in, be swarming with, be bursting at the seams with; be packed with, be crowded with, be thronged with, be crawling with, be overrun by, bristle with, seethe with, be thick with, be crammed with, be cram-full of, be choked with, be congested with• informal be jam-packed with, be chock-a-block with, be chock-full with, be lousy with• rare pullulate with
- The streets teem with hustling, bustling humanity, hag-like beggar women, street urchins and drunken revellers urinating against inn walls, all rubbing shoulders with the gentry in their smart clothes and carriages.
- The streets of Saigon teem with people, noises, and smells like no other city in Asia.
- Today, the same streets teem with chic shops and restaurants, and many of the old factories have been converted into fancy apartments.
Old English tēman, tīeman, of Germanic origin; related to team. The original senses included 'give birth to', also 'be or become pregnant', giving rise to 'be full of' in the late 16th century.
- (Of water, especially rain) pour down; fall heavily: with the rain teeming down at the manor, Italy seemed a long way offMore example sentences
- So hard was the rain teeming down on Friday that play on the famous golf course was called off before 3pm.
- The residents were piling up sodden carpets and furniture by the roadside, with the rain still teeming down.
- I could have smashed the bottle on the concrete front doorstep, but the rain was teeming down and I would get wet again.
Middle English: from Old Norse tœma 'to empty', from tómr 'empty'. The original sense was 'to empty', specifically 'to drain liquid from, pour liquid out'; the current sense (originally dialect) dates from the early 19th century.