Definition of oxbow in US English:



  • 1A U-shaped bend in the course of a river.

    • ‘Here the river is fabulous, clear and convoluted, with ponds jammed with yellow flag irises where there are springs or oxbows.’
    • ‘Most of the lakes of Jammu & Kashmir are remnants of ancient oxbows created by numerous rivers as they meandered within the valleys.’
    • ‘Middle distance, behind the bar, a boy with blond hair and blue pail follows a surge channel, an oxbow bending, down the beach and out to open water.’
    • ‘After Neef and Bullay, the Mosel forms a characteristic oxbow, passing the town of Zell and leading into the Bereich Bernkastel.’
    • ‘Although vast numbers of the best big trees went to the sawmill early in the century, many survived, protected by a network of swamps and wild river oxbows.’
    • ‘The history of Beatton River in British Columbia indicates that it should shed an oxbow in 2219, and researchers should be able to verify the timescale by etching rivers in sand in the lab, Edwards says.’
    • ‘Population A was located adjacent to an oxbow of the Bowie River, in Forest County, Mississippi.’
    • ‘But they work fine for most situations, and most species, in East Texas' sluggish rivers, bayous, oxbows and sloughs, too.’
    • ‘In essence, the stream follows a lower, more confined route, whilst a series of meandering high-level oxbows provide convenient bypasses.’
    • ‘Arctic Village is an assembly of 40-odd spruce-log cabins that overlook the serpentine bends, oxbows, and channels of the East Fork.’
    bend, loop, curve, twist, turn, turning, coil, zigzag, convolution
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1
      short for oxbow lake
      • ‘The minnow's range likely ebbed as insulated oxbows and shallow pools gradually disappeared.’
      • ‘Horseshoe Lake was an oxbow of the Mississippi River.’
  • 2A U-shaped collar of an ox yoke.

    • ‘A yoke is a heavy wooden frame or oxbow used to harness a team of oxen.’
    • ‘It is held on the animals' necks by an oxbow, usually U-shaped, that also transmits force from the animals' shoulders.’