Definition of monsoon in US English:



  • 1A seasonal prevailing wind in the region of South and Southeast Asia, blowing from the southwest between May and September and bringing rain (the wet monsoon), or from the northeast between October and April (the dry monsoon).

    • ‘But those states were spared when record-breaking monsoons brought heavy summer rains instead of the fierce fires officials had expected.’
    • ‘We get only very little rain during the South West monsoon.’
    • ‘Make sure you have spent enough time in the country to familiarise yourself with the different seasons - sunshine is one matter but monsoons are another.’
    • ‘The northeast monsoon, which brings us most of our water, has set in.’
    • ‘This creates winds that generally blow from the southwest during the summer monsoon and from the northeast from October to April.’
    • ‘And it points out that the cyclones and monsoons that already bring such damage to the area could become even more frequent and intense.’
    • ‘Many of them had seen tents go to other villages and thought that this would be the best thing to see them through the summer and the monsoon.’
    • ‘The period of the southwest monsoon (June to September) is usually the driest.’
    • ‘The monsoon trough is a broad area of low atmospheric pressure running east-west through the tropics in the summer months.’
    • ‘The other good news is that the northerly monsoons have arrived in the Gulf, blowing steadily from north-west veering north-east.’
    • ‘Transplanting of nearly 15-month-old nursery seedlings is done during next monsoons or following winter.’
    • ‘The result was a globally arid and dry climate, though regions near the coast most likely experienced seasonal monsoons.’
    • ‘May to September brings the cooler and drier south-east monsoon, with strong winds and high seas in July and August.’
    • ‘However, the monsoon is no season to lounge on the cosy sands beside the lapping waves.’
    • ‘The large area involved and the grand scale of the weather within monsoon climates suggest that monsoons play a significant role in the management of the global climate.’
    • ‘On another note, all elections should be held only after the monsoons, and after all the candidates have been forced to walk on foot through the city during the rains.’
    • ‘Malaysia's climate is tropical, with monsoons bringing an average annual rainfall of about 95 inches.’
    • ‘April through mid-November is the dry season, while December through March is the monsoon.’
    • ‘The south-west monsoon from May to October brings heavy rain and heavy seas and can restrict diving.’
    • ‘Besides, both north-east and south-west monsoons have a higher level of rainfall which may discourage farmers from applying more fertilisers.’
    tempest, squall
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 The rainy season accompanying the wet monsoon.
      • ‘Following the dry season, the monsoons hit the community in full force; several people drowned, trapped in the city's storm water runoff channels.’
      • ‘So it's been a long summer, a long hot summer, and once the hot season ends then the monsoon is just now come.’
      • ‘His voice reminds you of the long awaited monsoon showers caressing the parched earth.’
      • ‘The Himalayan Range is the major cause of the summer monsoon rains.’
      • ‘In sub-Saharan Africa rain comes in monsoons, which are large storms that dump a large amount of rain.’
      • ‘The monsoon showers are here again to swathe the State in a watery blanket.’
      • ‘Appropriate food as it was the day that the monsoon finally arrived in Delhi and you know how hungry rainy weather makes you.’
      • ‘India's dramatic seasons of drought and monsoon can destroy everything a person owns.’
      • ‘In other parts of the world, there are summer rain, spring rain, monsoons and April showers that bring May flowers.’
      • ‘The tree planting spree has started and monsoon rainfall will sustain it.’
      • ‘As the monsoons fade and the dry seasons take over, this year particularly there is widespread fear and uncertainty about the future.’
      • ‘This time of year, the rice was planted, and it was up for the summer monsoons to finish the job.’
      • ‘The village waits for the monsoons to come and rain on its crops, but the ground remains dry and infertile.’
      • ‘The delayed monsoon had affected all crops adversely.’


Late 16th century: from Portuguese monção, from Arabic mawsim ‘season’, from wasama ‘to mark, brand’.