[ hahy-draw-lik, -drol-ik ]
See synonyms for hydraulic on Thesaurus.com
  1. operated by, moved by, or employing water or other liquids in motion.

  2. operated by the pressure created by forcing water, oil, or another liquid through a comparatively narrow pipe or orifice.

  1. of or relating to water or other liquids in motion.

  2. of or relating to hydraulics.

  3. hardening under water, as a cement.

Origin of hydraulic

1620–30; <Latin hydraulicus<Greek hydraulikós of a water organ. See hydraulus, -ic

Other words from hydraulic

  • hy·drau·li·cal·ly, adverb
  • non·hy·drau·lic, adjective
  • un·hy·drau·lic, adjective

Words Nearby hydraulic

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use hydraulic in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for hydraulic


/ (haɪˈdrɒlɪk) /

  1. operated by pressure transmitted through a pipe by a liquid, such as water or oil

  2. of, concerned with, or employing liquids in motion

  1. of or concerned with hydraulics

  2. hardening under water: hydraulic cement

Origin of hydraulic

C17: from Latin hydraulicus of a water organ, from Greek hudraulikos, from hudraulos water organ, from hydro- + aulos pipe, reed instrument

Derived forms of hydraulic

  • hydraulically, adverb

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 hydraulic


[ hī-drôlĭk ]

  1. Operated by the pressure of water or other liquids. Hydraulic systems, such as hydraulic brakes, allow mechanical force to be transferred along curved paths (through pipes or tubes) that would be difficult for solid mechanisms, such as levers or cables, to negotiate efficiently.

  2. Relating to hydraulics.

  1. Capable of hardening under water, as cement.

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

Cultural definitions for hydraulic


A descriptive term for a system operated or moved by a fluid. The hydraulic jack, in which force is transmitted from a handle by means of a heavy oil, is probably the most familiar hydraulic device.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.