Share this entry

Share this page

torrent

Line breaks: tor|rent
Pronunciation: /ˈtɒr(ə)nt
 
/

Definition of torrent in English:

noun

1A strong and fast-moving stream of water or other liquid: rain poured down in torrents after the rains, the stream becomes a raging torrent
More example sentences
  • Artemis kept the torrent of water streaming towards the animal but it did no good in slowing it down.
  • People talked about hundreds of folks running in terror through the streets trying to escape the raging torrents of waters.
  • Solicitor Paul Cowper and his family endured a gruelling seven hours trapped on a balcony, surrounded by torrents of raging water in Sri Lanka.
Synonyms
flood, deluge, inundation, spate, cascade, rush, stream, current, gushing, flow, overflow, tide, fountain
downpour, deluge, rainstorm, rain, shower
1.1 (a torrent of/torrents of) An overwhelming outpouring of (something, typically words): she was subjected to a torrent of abuse
More example sentences
  • He's a very bright young man whose ideas come spilling out of him - on paper or on the phone - in a torrent of words.
  • Malcolm heard a torrent of foreign words as the girl tried to calm the child, then a bustle as she laid him down.
  • It points, like an arrow, to the one word that stops her from hurling a torrent of abuse at him.
Synonyms
outburst, stream, volley, outpouring, hail, onslaught, avalanche, flow, barrage, battery, tide, spate, effusion, inundation

Origin

late 16th century: from French, from Italian torrente, from Latin torrent- 'boiling, roaring', from torrere 'parch, scorch'.

More
  • toast from (Late Middle English):

    There is a connection between the toast you eat and the toast you make with a raised glass. Toast is based on Latin torrere ‘to parch, scorch, dry up’, the source also of torrid (early 17th century), and torrent (Late Middle English) a rushing or ‘boiling’ flow of water. ‘To parch’ was the earliest meaning of the English word, and before long it was used to describe browning bread in front of a fire. Drinking toasts goes back to the late 17th century, and originated in the practice whereby a drinker would name a lady and request that all the people present drink her health. The idea was that the lady's name flavoured the drink like the pieces of spiced toast that people sometimes added to wine in those days.

Words that rhyme with torrent

abhorrent, warrant

Definition of torrent in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day cumbersome
Pronunciation: ˈkʌmbəs(ə)m
adjective
large or heavy and therefore difficult to carry…