[floo-vee-uh l]


of or relating to a river: a meandering fluvial contour.
produced by or found in a river: fluvial plants.

Origin of fluvial

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin fluviālis, equivalent to fluvi(us) river (derivative of fluere to flow) + -ālis -al1
Related formstrans·flu·vi·al, adjectiveun·flu·vi·al, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for fluvial

Historical Examples of fluvial

  • What, then, would be the fluvial force required to move the Welcome Nugget?

    Getting Gold

    J. C. F. Johnson

  • It is the generosity of a fluvial Robin Hood, who steals from the wealthy to confer benefactions on the poor.

    The Spell of Switzerland

    Nathan Haskell Dole

  • The most extensive are the fluvial deposits accumulated as valley fill throughout the entire Andean realm.

  • The son of Helvetia discovered the precious metal in grains, and nuggets, interspersed with the drift of a fluvial deposit.

  • These consisted of two piers forming a seaward prolongation of the fluvial channel, begun in 1858 and completed in 1861.

British Dictionary definitions for fluvial


fluviatile (ˈfluːvɪəˌtaɪl, -tɪl)


of, relating to, or occurring in a riverfluvial deposits

Word Origin for fluvial

C14: from Latin fluviālis, from fluvius river, from fluere to flow
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 fluvial

"pertaining to a river," late 14c., from Latin fluvialis "of a river," from fluvius "river," related to fluere "to flow" (see flow (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

fluvial in Science



Relating to or inhabiting a river or stream.
Produced by the action of a river or stream.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.