Definition of undercurrent in English:


Line breaks: under|cur¦rent
Pronunciation: /ˈʌndəkʌr(ə)nt


1An underlying feeling or influence, especially one that is contrary to the prevailing atmosphere and is not expressed openly: racial undercurrents
More example sentences
  • The buoyant mood of his audience was certainly out of kilter with the deep undercurrent of frustration evident elsewhere in Bournemouth this week.
  • As Stephen becomes reluctantly drawn into the lives of his rural neighbours, he becomes a witness to the undercurrents of love, hate and obsession that swirl beneath the superficial tranquillity of the countryside.
  • The artists' chain of contrasting attitudes reveals debates within society, undercurrents of unrest and anxieties about city life.
undertone, overtone, suggestion, connotation, implication, intimation, hint, nuance, trace, suspicion, whisper, murmur, touch, tinge;
feeling, atmosphere, aura, tenor, echo, flavour, colouring, vein;
informal vibes
rare subcurrent
2A current of water below the surface and moving in a different direction from any surface current.
More example sentences
  • In tidal water the undercurrents may often be going in the opposite direction to the top flow.
  • However, waves generated in deep offshore waters that eventually overtop in shallower water and break on the coast, creating a surf-zone with reversing undercurrents, are fundamentally different from the waves in shallow lakes.
  • The tides and undercurrents are notorious, and even in summer bathing is not recommended.
undertow, underflow, underswell, underdrift, understream, undertide, underrun;
Nautical underset
rare underwork

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cause (someone) to lose confidence or hope