The Esperanto wikipedia defines "temperaturo" like this :

Temperaturo estas fizika eco de materio, la bazo de la komunaj nocioj "varma" kaj "malvarma". (Temperature is a physical property of matter, the basis of the common notions "Hot" and "cold")

So is there a difference between "temperaturo" and "varmeco", or "temperaturo" is just one way to measure "varmeco"?

  • 3
    It seems to me to be the same as temperature and warmth in English. One is precisely measurable (temperature in degrees) whereas the other is rather fuzzy (warmth). Commented Feb 22, 2017 at 12:50

3 Answers 3


I believe that varmeco is not a physical quantity. It's just a quality of being warm (Oliver Manson has the best translation: warmth). It can be compared to some extent but does not have any proper scale. The examples from Vortaro all fall into this usage:

  • la varmeco k beleco de ĉi tiu nekonata paradizo
  • la varmeco de liaj sentoj kontraŭ mi, de lia akceptado, de lia parolo min surprizis
  • meti en la diskuton multe da varmeco.

On the other hand, temperaturo is not eco but grando:

  • oni mezuras temperaturon laŭ la skalo celsia (en °C), kelvina (en K) aŭ (nun malofte) laŭ la farenhejta (en °F)
  • la temperaturo (de la ĉambro) devas esti almenaŭ ses gradojn pli alta
  • kia estas la ĉimatena temperaturo?
  • altaj, malaltaj temperaturoj
  • absoluta temperaturo
  • varmeco or varmo is a phisical quantity, but not the same as temperaturo. eo.wikipedia.org/wiki/Varmo eo.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temperaturo Commented Feb 22, 2017 at 13:47
  • @JohannesMueller I agree about varmo, but is varmeco indeed another name for that?
    – La Vo-o
    Commented Feb 22, 2017 at 14:16
  • Well, the use of -ec- is often arguable. Maybe come up with an example sentence, that changes its meaning when replacing varmo with varmeco. Commented Feb 22, 2017 at 14:51
  • 1
    If we are going to split the hairs between "varmeco" and "temperaturo" then it's necessary to split them just as fine when discussing "varmo" and "varmeco." Commented Feb 22, 2017 at 18:05
  • @JohannesMueller "Tiu ruĝa muro radias agrablan varmecon." I think with varmeco this is a question of aesthetic assessment whereas with varmo it's most likely untrue, unless the wall is red because it has 1000°C.
    – La Vo-o
    Commented Feb 22, 2017 at 21:28
  • temperaturo = tempurature

  • varmeco = warmness

What is the temperature outside? (temperaturo)

How warm is it today? (varmeco)


For many speakers there is no difference between varmeco and temperaturo. If we follow PIV (and in this regard I do, at least I endeavor to), there is indeed a difference.

The confusion comes in over the meaning of eco and how it relates to terms in the various national languages. This is a broader question, but it's impossible to answer the original question without touching on it.

What is the difference, for example between varmo and varmeco? Between longo and longeco? Between eblo and ebleco? Between alto and alteco? It's tempting to translate these in our heads to warmth, length, possibility, and height - then jump to the conclusion that there is no difference. Indeed many very fluent speakers live their Esperanto lives for decades without noticing that there is a difference.

Look up these words in PIV and you'll begin to see the pattern. When we admire the longecon of a hare's ears, we're admiring how long they are. If we happen to like short ears, we would never say that we admire the longecon of a guinea pig's ears because a guinea pig's ears don't have longecon. We can say something nice about the longo of the guinea pig's ears, or even admire the mallongecon - but not the longecon.

  • Temperaturo is an indication of how hot or how cold something is.
  • Varmo is the energy, or heat, that comes off of something warm.
  • Varmeco is the quality that a hot thing has.

I am not convinced that the pattern is followed 100% on all the -eco words. The general idea, though, is that if you are talking about the X-eco of something, you can usually turn around and say that this something is X-a.

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