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See more synonyms for rivulet on Thesaurus.com
  1. a small stream; streamlet; brook.
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Origin of rivulet

1580–90; earlier rivolet < Italian rivoletto, diminutive of rivolo < Latin rīvulus small stream
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Examples from the Web for rivulet

Historical Examples

  • On seeing the rivulet, he hesitated for a moment, and then followed its course.

    The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete

    Emile Zola

  • Then they took their way under the trees, alongside the little Longchamp rivulet.

  • But near the rivulet yonder stands a fox sniffing the morning air.

    The Book of Khalid

    Ameen Rihani

  • "Presumptuous that I am," said he to the rivulet, to contradict himself the next moment.

  • The tall plumes of the canes, new-born, by the side of every stream and rivulet.

British Dictionary definitions for rivulet


  1. a small stream
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Word Origin

C16: from Italian rivoletto, from Latin rīvulus, from rīvus stream
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 rivulet


1580s, from Italian rivoletto, diminutive of rivolo, itself a diminutive of rivo "brook," from Latin rivus "stream, brook," from PIE *reiwos, literally "that which flows," from root *reie- "to flow, run" (see Rhine).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper