There are 2 main definitions of crater in English:

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crater 1

Line breaks: cra¦ter
Pronunciation: /ˈkreɪtə/


1A large bowl-shaped cavity in the ground or on a celestial object, typically one caused by an explosion or the impact of a meteorite: the blast left a crater in the car park Ganymede, the largest moon in the solar system, has relatively few impact craters
More example sentences
  • As a result, the ground is littered with craters from asteroid impacts.
  • The blast left an enormous crater, and the impact tunneled really deep.
  • The oddest thing is that the missiles, while being tremendously destructive of human life, left quite small craters in the ground.
hollow, bowl, basin, pan, hole, cavity, pocket;
shell hole;
Geology  caldera, maar, solfatara
1.1A large hollow forming the mouth of a volcano: a great plume of gas and ash rises above the crater
More example sentences
  • Other ephemeral lakes develop in volcanic craters or collapsed caldera systems.
  • Vesuvius is a stratovolcano that grew within the breached crater of Monte Somma volcano.
  • During the last several days smoke, ash and vapor have been spewing from the crater of the volcano in western Colima state.
1.2A cavity or hole in any surface: using the rounded end of a rolling pin, make craters over the surface of the cake
More example sentences
  • The goopy surface is pocked with craters where bubbles burst.
  • First, acid etching of the electrode surfaces produces tiny cavities and craters that greatly expand the surface area across which a static charge can be held.
  • Microscopic bumps and craters on the painted surface tend to attract and contain dirt.
2A large bowl used in ancient Greece for mixing wine.
Example sentences
  • There were marble craters (mixing bowls) and candelabra, statuary, busts, reliefs, column capitals and bases, and 60 to 70 marble column shafts.
  • To judge from the scenes of drinking painted on Greek vessels, the crater stood on the floor beside the couches on which the drinkers reclined.
  • He gestured at the Greeks, who produced a crater and a pair of silver goblets.


[with object] Back to top  
Form a crater in (the ground or a planet): pilots returned to the airfields to crater the runways (as adjective cratered) the heavily cratered areas of the moon
More example sentences
  • We saw places along the shoreline where the ground was cratered, trees flung aside in broken rows.
  • The first hundred yards of the tunnel were the worst - the road was heavily cratered, and our vehicles bucked and shuddered wildly, spraying snowmelt into the blackness.
  • The heavily cratered surface seems different from other comets we've seen up close.


Early 17th century (denoting the hollow forming the mouth of a volcano): via Latin from Greek kratēr 'mixing-bowl', from krasis 'mixture'.

  • The Greeks and Romans preferred to drink their wine mixed with water, and thought it very uncivilized to drink it neat. They would mix their wine in a large wide-mouthed bowl called in Greek a kratēr and in Latin a crater. English adopted this word as the term for the bowl-shaped hollow that forms the mouth of a volcano.

Words that rhyme with crater

cater, creator, curator, data, debater, delator, dumbwaiter, equator, fascinator, freighter, frustrater, gaiter, grater, gyrator, hater, later, legator, mater, negator, pater, peseta, plater, rotator, skater, slater, stater, tater, traitor, ultimata, understater, upstater, waiter
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There are 2 main definitions of crater in English:

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Crater 2 Line breaks: Cra¦ter
Pronunciation: /ˈkreɪtə/
1A small and faint southern constellation (the Cup), between Hydra and Leo, said to represent the goblet of Apollo.
1.1 (as genitive Crateris krəˈtɛrɪs) Used with preceding letter or numeral to designate a star in this constellation: the star Delta Crateris


Latin, from Greek, 'mixing bowl'.

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