One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Small particles of snow with a fragile crust of ice; soft hail.
- ‘In this work the growth, motion and charging of graupel particles are simulated by computer.’
- ‘When this process continues so that the shape of the original snow crystal is no longer identifiable, the resulting crystal is referred to as graupel.’
- ‘Derived from the German word for barley, graupel is created when supercooled water droplets coat a snowflake with ice or when a supercooled drop develops an outer coating of ice without freezing through.’
- ‘Notice for this wind field that graupel falls rapidly to the surface and drifts only a short distance downwind.’
- ‘Graupel is a wonderful form of precipitation. It is not snow, not hail, not sleet, and definitely not rain.’
Late 19th century: German Graupel, back-formation from graupeln ‘to hail with soft hailstones’, from Graupe ‘cereal grain’.
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