Definition of drought in US English:



  • 1A prolonged period of abnormally low rainfall, leading to a shortage of water.

    • ‘It may be necessary to provide water for high-value trees and shrubs during dry periods or droughts to promote vigorous growth.’
    • ‘In many places, including the southern USA, hurricanes or tropical storms sometimes end droughts.’
    • ‘The water hit me cool and refreshingly; like a rain storm after a prolonged drought.’
    • ‘Chinese officials say cloud seeding has helped to relieve severe droughts and water shortages in cities.’
    • ‘That shows that we're having many more severe storms, floods, droughts, and heat waves.’
    • ‘World temperatures are continuing to rise and extreme weather conditions, such as droughts, floods and heatwaves, are becoming alarmingly common.’
    • ‘Floods, storms, heatwaves and droughts have created headlines in the UK over recent years.’
    • ‘During climate extremes, whether droughts or flooding rains, those on the land feel it most.’
    • ‘At the same time, large chunks of peninsular India receive less than normal rainfall, leading to droughts.’
    • ‘The trip is made possible as after four years of drought, recent rainfall means crops may now grow.’
    • ‘Others have argued that these periods of droughts are not abnormal.’
    • ‘From hurricane to droughts, weird weather can shake up the economy.’
    • ‘Earth is set to warm further in the decades ahead, bringing more and bigger fires, mudslides, heat waves, droughts, and powerful hurricanes.’
    • ‘We worked hard through droughts and downpours and no longer walked down to the far hayfield to dream.’
    • ‘An increase in floods, droughts, tropical cyclones, and sea levels are also expected to bring a host of health problems in their wake.’
    • ‘The drought began to break in mid-December when heavy general rain fell in Victoria, with more after Christmas.’
    • ‘Across the world, extreme weather events such as droughts, floods and hurricanes are becoming more frequent and more intense.’
    • ‘A high degree of soil exposure also results in high surface evaporation resulting in years of low rainfall becoming severe droughts.’
    • ‘Tree rings can tell stories of fire history, seasons, droughts, and rainfall.’
    • ‘In fact, tropical storms or hurricanes have ended many droughts in Texas, and other parts of the world.’
    dry spell, dry period, lack of rain, shortage of water
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    1. 1.1usually with modifier A prolonged absence of something specified.
      ‘he ended a five-game hitting drought’
      • ‘This has been despite a well documented two year goal drought.’
      • ‘And the tourism drought hits the Midwest less hard than other parts of the country.’
      • ‘Davies' victory in Sydney ended a 13-month title drought for the Coventry-born player.’
      • ‘Robbie Blake curled a trademark free kick just wide and then slipped at the crucial moment when he seemed certain to end his worrying goal drought.’
      • ‘One can only hope that, after the relative goal drought of two years ago in Mali, they and the other 15 nations put on a more exciting spectacle.’
      • ‘Dennis Wise's glancing header ended the team's goal drought - spanning 588 minutes.’
      • ‘Is the West in any position to withstand another oil drought?’
      • ‘After a long playoff drought, Blackhawks fans starving for success got, well, nothing.’
      • ‘The same happened to him two years ago, when after a goal drought he was about to be farmed out to the lower leagues.’
      • ‘Ferrari endured a 16-year drought before regaining their title touch.’
      • ‘Bron wants to solve the current armed forces recruitment drought.’
      • ‘Ward broke a 13-game scoring drought at Wimbledon and believes that could be the springboard for a goal burst of his own.’
      • ‘On the rostrum, it became clear just how much winning meant to him after an 11-month drought.’
      • ‘All of Philadelphia is hoping to end that poor town's championship drought.’
      • ‘Sam must be seriously concerned at a goal drought that threatens to drag us into a relegation struggle.’
      • ‘So England's men's championship drought continues beyond its 68th year or whatever!’
      • ‘Manchester United's championship drought is over and the fences with the manager have been mended.’
      • ‘The Tallaght man needs to get his act together and tomorrow night would be the perfect time to end his recent goal drought.’
      • ‘I am going through a bit of a goal drought at the moment and it would be nice to get a goal or even a few before the end of the season.’
      • ‘The Hatters were truly woeful and rarely looked set to end their goal drought.’
      lack, want, non-existence, unavailability, deficiency, deprivation, dearth
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    2. 1.2archaic Thirst.
      thirstiness, dryness
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Late Old English drūgath ‘dryness’, of Germanic origin; compare with Dutch droogte; related to dry.