Definition of gravel in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈɡrav(ə)l/


[mass noun]
1A loose aggregation of small water-worn or pounded stones.
Example sentences
  • Keep their roots shaded with gravel or some large stones, mulch them now and then and they'll be happy for years.
  • Loose gravel crunched under the rigid bases of her knee-high black boots.
  • Walking across the street, loose gravel crunching under the brand new boots I'd bought.
shingle, grit, pebbles, stones
1.1A mixture of gravel with coarse sand, used for paths and roads and as an aggregate.
Example sentences
  • What separates roads from gravel paths, is the degree of asphalting they have been dressed with.
  • But recovered concrete can be crushed and used as road gravel or aggregate.
  • Sand or gravel is spread below where the concrete is poured.
1.2A stratum or deposit of gravel.
Example sentences
  • The shallow soils are derived from fluvial gravel overlain by multiple Holocene volcanic ash deposits and aeolian dust.
  • Complex sand waves, bipolar cross-bedding and gravel lag deposits compare with both fluvial and shallow marine settings.
  • They form relict deposits on continental shelves and sometimes thin contemporary deposits - gravel lags where currents are sufficiently strong.
2 Medicine Aggregations of crystals formed in the urinary tract.
Example sentences
  • Renal stones can in fact mean renal gravel, this is just as painful, but is only sand sized grains that don't show up on X-ray.
  • Its relaxant powers makes it also useful to facilitate the passage of renal calculi and cystic gravel.
  • The authors draw the attention to the side-effect of the medicament, which might cause renal gravel formation.

verb (gravels, gravelling, gravelled; US gravels, graveling, graveled)

[with object]
1Cover (an area) with gravel: (as adjective gravelled) gravelled paths
More example sentences
  • Outside, the back garden is landscaped with a rockery area, lawn, patio area and gravelled area incorporating shrubs and climbers.
  • A small gravelled area is the first thing one encounters, southwest - facing and with a thin layer of soil covering spoil from a demolition.
  • ‘A roughly graveled area used for parking cars grabbed my imagination,’ she says.
2US informal Make (someone) angry or annoyed: the strike was badly organized and it gravelled him to involve himself in it
More example sentences
  • English gravelled him to death, because he had not the command of English that he had of his native tongue.
  • It really gravels me that everything was cut; they clear-cut everything.
  • That woman's hypocrisy really gravels me for some reason.
2.1 archaic Confuse or puzzle (someone): the wisest doctor is gravelled by the inquisitiveness of a child
More example sentences
  • The most difficult questions in the Cabinet never gravelled him; the most novel situations could not bewilder his clear judgment.
  • No, I take my oath that the thing that gravelled him most, to start with, was not this, but the price he had fetched! He couldn't seem to get over that seven dollars.
  • And this question gravelled them, and ran them aground, and served to shame them before the people.


Middle English: from Old French, diminutive of grave (see grave4).

Words that rhyme with gravel

Cavell, cavil, gavel, ravel, travel

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: gravel

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