Definition of flume in English:


Syllabification: flume
Pronunciation: /flo͞om


  • 1A deep narrow channel or ravine with a stream running through it.
    More example sentences
    • The hydraulic system had to take water from the creek and return it there, probably by a dam and flume system.
    • These operations required vast quantities of water, which were diverted from rivers into flumes and pipes and stored behind wooden dams, which in turn required vast quantities of timber.
  • 1.1An artificial channel conveying water, typically used for transporting logs or timber.
    More example sentences
    • The flume recirculates both water and sediment in order to provide a continuous supply of heterogeneous sand particles under steady flow conditions during the course of each experiment.
    • Often the animals were placed in water flumes and required to swim continuously against a current generated by a pump.
    • According to Pearl, Pennoyer constructed a flume that carried stream water to the site for washing out and screening crystals.
  • 1.2A water-chute ride at an amusement park.
    More example sentences
    • Tom couldn't get enough of the mini flume and waterslide.
    • If you enjoy a day at the swimming pool, splashing down the flumes, think of canyoning as the 100% natural equivalent.
    • You walk where you can, scramble over rocks, wade and swim through pools and in places you slide down natural flumes.


Middle English (denoting a river or stream): from Old French flum, from Latin flumen 'river', from fluere 'to flow'. The sense 'artificial channel' dates from the mid 18th century; 'water chute for amusement' is a late 20th-century usage.

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