[ kal-der-uh, kawl- ]
/ kælˈdɛr ə, kɔl- /


a large, basinlike depression resulting from the explosion or collapse of the center of a volcano.

Nearby words

  1. calcutta cup,
  2. caldarium,
  3. caldecott award,
  4. calder,
  5. calder, alexander,
  6. calderdale,
  7. calderón de la barca,
  8. calderón de la barca, pedro,
  9. caldron,
  10. caldwell

Origin of caldera

1860–65; < Spanish Caldera, name of a crater on Canary Islands, literally, cauldron < Late Latin caldāria, noun use of feminine of caldārius of warming; see caldarium

Can be confusedcaldera fumarole geyser volcano Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for caldera

British Dictionary definitions for caldera


/ (kælˈdɛərə, ˈkɔːldərə) /


a large basin-shaped crater at the top of a volcano, formed by the collapse or explosion of the coneSee cirque

Word Origin for caldera

C19: from Spanish Caldera (literally: cauldron), name of a crater in the Canary Islands

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

Word Origin and History for caldera



"cavity on the summit of a volcano," 1865, from Spanish caldera "cauldron, kettle," from Latin caldarium, caldarius "pertaining to warming," from calidus "warm, hot" (see calorie).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for caldera


[ kăl-dârə, -dîrə, käl- ]

A large, roughly circular crater left after a volcanic explosion or the collapse of a volcanic cone. Calderas are typically much wider in diameter than the openings of the vents from which they were formed.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.