[ kuh-loo-vee-uhm ]

noun,plural col·lu·vi·a [kuh-loo-vee-uh], /kəˈlu vi ə/, col·lu·vi·ums.Geology.
  1. loose earth material that has accumulated at the base of a hill, through the action of gravity, as piles of talus, avalanche debris, and sheets of detritus moved by soil creep or frost action.

Origin of colluvium

1935–40; <New Latin, equivalent to Latin colluv-, base of colluere to wash out (see collutory) + -ium-ium, on the model of Latin alluviumalluvium, dīluviumdeluge

Other words from colluvium

  • col·lu·vi·al, adjective

Words Nearby colluvium Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

British Dictionary definitions for colluvium


/ (kəˈluːvɪəm) /

nounplural -via (-vɪə) or -viums
  1. a mixture of rock fragments from the bases of cliffs

Origin of colluvium

Latin: collection of filth, from colluere to wash thoroughly, from com- (intensive) + luere to wash

Derived forms of colluvium

  • colluvial, adjective

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

Scientific definitions for colluvium


[ kə-lōōvē-əm ]

Plural colluviums colluvia
  1. A loose deposit of rock debris accumulated through the action of rainwash or gravity at the base of a gently sloping cliff or slope.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.