coulee

[ koo-lee ]
/ ˈku li /

noun

Chiefly Western U.S. and Western Canada. a deep ravine or gulch, usually dry, that has been formed by running water.
a small valley.
a low-lying area.
a small intermittent stream.
Geology. a stream of lava.

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Origin of coulee

1800–10, Americanism; < Canadian French, French: a flowing, noun use of feminine of coulé, past participle of couler to flow < Latin cōlāre to filter, strain, derivative of cōlum strainer, sieve; cf. colander, portcullis
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

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British Dictionary definitions for coulee

coulee
/ (ˈkuːleɪ, -lɪ) /

noun

  1. a flow of molten lava
  2. such lava when solidified
Western US and Canadian a dry stream valley, especially a long steep-sided gorge or ravine that once carried melt water from a glacier
a small intermittent stream in such a ravine

Word Origin for coulee

C19: from Canadian French coulée a flow, from French, from couler to flow, from Latin cōlāre to sift, purify; see colander
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