Definition of runnel in English:


Line breaks: run¦nel
Pronunciation: /ˈrʌn(ə)l


  • 1A gutter: muddy lanes with runnels for effluent
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    • Trickling water from a wall fountain flows through a stair-stepped runnel (water channel) into the patio below to provide soothing sound.
    • A glass bottomed runnel, which collects water during the short and torrential rains, doubles as a skylight over a glass shower and over the guest room below.
    • In keeping with a project goal to make greening strategies visible to the public, the rainwater not retained by the vegetated roof is directed via surface runnels to water storage.
  • 1.1A brook or rill.
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    • In general, he has a predilection for the rills and runnels of the past, the tributaries of history rather than what you might consider to be its mainstreams.
    • Now the river is no more than a runnel, and his paintings articulate the artist's inner musings and memories.
    • His dumpy women bathers at the Hermitage and the Leiden Museum sit under such trees, with Rembrandtian simplicity dabbling their feet in mere runnels of water.
  • 1.2A small stream of a particular liquid: a runnel of sweat
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    • Mr Spire seemed of the same mind and was washing his hands in a runnel of dew among a garble of tree roots.
    • The rivulets and runnels of Celtic Park are lined with the pictures, mementoes and iconography of former glory.
    • ‘Amen,’ Joe echoed and bowed his head and tears slowly slid down his cheeks forming runnels through the dust that had coated his skin as a result of his labours.


late 16th century (denoting a brook or rill): variant of dialect rindle, influenced by the verb run.

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