a drain or channel crossing under a road, sidewalk, etc.; sewer; conduit.

Origin of culvert

First recorded in 1765–75; origin uncertain Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for culvert

pipe, duct, gutter, canal, conduit, drain, watercourse, channel

Examples from the Web for culvert

Contemporary Examples of culvert

Historical Examples of culvert

  • The adjacency of the edge of the culvert warned him of what had befallen.

    The Law-Breakers

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • It also indicates to the drivers the location of the end of the culvert.

  • These are usually constructed with endwalls integral with the barrel of the culvert.

  • "I don't know—I couldn't see—we ran into a culvert," replied Maud.

    Wayside Courtships

    Hamlin Garland

  • There was a shrieking streak of white and he disappeared under a culvert.

    Jane Journeys On

    Ruth Comfort Mitchell

British Dictionary definitions for culvert



a drain or covered channel that crosses under a road, railway, etc
a channel for an electric cable
a tunnel through which water is pumped into or out of a dry dock

Word Origin for culvert

C18: of unknown origin
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 culvert

1773, origin unknown, perhaps, as Weekley suggests, the name of a long-forgotten engineer or bridge-builder.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper