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noun Geology.
  1. a serpentine ridge of gravelly and sandy drift, believed to have been formed by streams under or in glacial ice.
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Origin of esker

First recorded in 1850–55, esker is from the Irish word eiscir ridge of mountains
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for esker

Historical Examples

  • And he went to the friars at Esker to take it off of him, and they took it off.

    Visions and Beliefs in the West of Ireland, First Series

    Lady Gregory

  • Do you think he will teach us to do cures like the friars used at Esker?

    Where There is Nothing

    William Butler Yeats

  • I'll be bound he's on the Esker, looking afther the sheep, poor crathurs, durin' Andy Connor's illness in the small-pock.

    The Dead Boxer

    William Carleton

  • Under that end of this Esker which pointed nearest to the south-west, stood the chapel we have just mentioned.

    The Tithe-Proctor

    William Carleton

  • The esker is fully a quarter of a mile long, about thirty feet high, and four rods wide at its base.

British Dictionary definitions for esker


eskar (ˈɛskɑː, -kə)

  1. a long winding ridge of gravel, sand, etc, originally deposited by a meltwater stream running under a glacierAlso called: os
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Word Origin

C19: from Old Irish escir ridge
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 esker


"deposit left by a glacial stream," 1852, from Irish eiscir "ridge of gravel."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

esker in Science


  1. A long, narrow, steep-sided ridge of coarse sand and gravel deposited by a stream flowing in or under a melting sheet of glacial ice. Eskers range in height from 3 m (9.8 ft) to more than 200 m (656 ft) and in length from less than 100 m (328 ft) to more than 500 km (310 mi).
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.