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90s Slang You Should Know


[ed-ee] /ˈɛd i/
noun, plural eddies.
a current at variance with the main current in a stream of liquid or gas, especially one having a rotary or whirling motion.
a small whirlpool.
any similar current, as of air, dust, or fog.
a current or trend, as of opinion or events, running counter to the main current.
verb (used with or without object), eddied, eddying.
to move or whirl in eddies.
Origin of eddy
late Middle English
1425-75; late Middle English; Old English ed- turning + ēa water; akin to Old Norse itha
Related forms
uneddied, adjective
uneddying, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for eddies
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The moment was critical, for the wind was baffling, now wafting the sparks clear away, now whirling them in eddies around us.

  • Every now and then the wind blew in from the east picking up the dust in eddies.

  • There was a final despairing shriek, then the arms ceased to struggle and the eddies closed over the body.

    Weatherby's Inning Ralph Henry Barbour
  • In an instant I had shot out of the eddies and was skimming down the sky.

    Danger! and Other Stories Arthur Conan Doyle
  • In these eddies salmon were congregated by the thousands, showing their black backs and fins an inch or two above the surface.

    A Summer's Outing Carter H. Harrison
  • There were thousands of eddies and whirlpools, all suggestive of destruction.

    Frank Merriwell's Pursuit Burt L. Standish
  • It utilizes the energy due to the whirling velocity of the water which in most pumps is wasted in eddies in the discharge pipe.

  • They choked the aisles and carried him here and there at the mercy of their eddies.

    A Son of the City Herman Gastrell Seely
  • Your line will get drowned somewhat until you know the tricks of the under-currents and eddies.

    Lines in Pleasant Places William Senior
British Dictionary definitions for eddies


noun (pl) -dies
a movement in a stream of air, water, or other fluid in which the current doubles back on itself causing a miniature whirlwind or whirlpool
a deviation from or disturbance in the main trend of thought, life, etc, esp one that is relatively unimportant
verb -dies, -dying, -died
to move or cause to move against the main current
Word Origin
C15: probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Old Norse itha; related to Old English ed- again, back, Old High German it-


Mary Baker. 1821–1910, US religious leader; founder of the Christian Science movement (1866)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for eddies



1810, from eddy (n.). Related: Eddied; eddying.



mid-15c., Scottish ydy, possibly from Old Norse iða "whirlpool," from Proto-Germanic *ith- "a second time, again," which is related to the common Old English prefix ed- "again, backwards; repetition, turning" (forming such words as edðingung "reconciliation," edgift "restitution," edniwian "to renew, restore," edhwierfan "to retrace one's steps," edgeong "to become young again"). Cf. Old English edwielle "eddy, vortex, whirlpool." The prefix is cognate with Latin et, Old High German et-, Gothic "and, but, however." Related: Eddies.


1810, from eddy (n.). Related: Eddied; eddying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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eddies in Science
A current, as of water or air, moving in a direction that is different from that of the main current. Eddies generally involve circular motion; unstable patterns of eddies are often called turbulence. See also vortex.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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