One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A small stream.
brook, rivulet, runnel, streamlet, freshetView synonyms
- ‘The river is about 30 m wide here, alternating between pools and rocky-bottomed shallow rills.’
- ‘Slowing as Sara's viewpoint neared the surface, more and more details became clearer - craters large and small, passing rills and distant mountains, boulders everywhere.’
- ‘Michael suggested the water should be channelled under the house to supply Robin's pond and a short rill in the back before being pumped to the front, where it supplies a fountain.’
- ‘After a spell of rain, small rills are filled up with garbage.’
- ‘The rill was a parched ravine now, as though some convulsion of the earth had bled the region dry of its lifeblood.’
- ‘A linked watercourse is planned, with cascades, ponds and rills.’
- 1.1 A shallow channel cut in the ground by running water.
- ‘The characteristic forms of water erosion are rills and gullies.’
- ‘But it is not quite a cascade, either, since the narrowness of the granite channel gives it something of the character of a formal rill.’
- ‘As rills cut deeper and coalesce, gully erosion develops.’
- ‘Flow velocity increases, and the increased energy detaches more soil particles and transports them in tiny channels called rills.’
- ‘No evidence was observed of increased gully formation except in localized spots, nor was there any visible evidence of excessive rill or sheet erosion.’
- ‘These rills generally develop in the same places each year.’
- ‘These streams appear from the crevices of the rocks running through rills and gullies.’
- 1.2variant spelling of rille
1(of water) flow in or as in a rill.‘the springwater rilled over our cold hands’
- 1.1as adjective rilled Indented with small grooves.‘blocks of butter pounded into artful shapes with rilled paddles’
- 1.1as adjective rilled Indented with small grooves.
Mid 16th century: probably of Low German origin.
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