1A gate that can be opened or closed to admit or exclude water, especially the lower gate of a lock.
- In Manggarai, South Jakarta, flood victims tried to take matters into their own hands and open a floodgate to allow the water to drain from their homes.
- Then, finally throwing the switch he opened the floodgate to the sluice, and let the water roll out into the place that was once the White River.
- Landing hard she ignored the twinge that shot up her leg, stumbling past the daemon to the control platform and shoving the wheel around to fully open the floodgate.
1.1 (usually the floodgates) A last restraint holding back an outpouring of something powerful or substantial: his lawsuit could open the floodgates for thousands of similar claims
More example sentences
- His success is expected to open the floodgates for American cycling, as Armstrong's feats can now command the front pages of most American papers and magazines.
- They want the syndrome to be recognised - which would open the floodgates for compensation claims - and for it to be tackled ahead of any future conflict.
- Analysts believe a positive reaction to the issue could open the floodgates for dozens of other high-tech firms which have been waiting for the market to improve.
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