or se·rac

[si-rak; French sey-rak]

noun, plural sé·racs [si-raks; French sey-rak] /sɪˈræks; French seɪˈrak/.

a large irregularity of glacial ice, as a pinnacle found in glacial crevasses and formed by melting or movement of the ice.

Origin of sérac

1855–60; < French sérac kind of white cheese (compare Medieval Latin serācium), ultimately < Latin serum whey
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for serac

Historical Examples of serac

  • The region was one of serac where the glacier was puckered up, folded and crushed.

  • For many hours a way was won through a mighty turmoil of serac and over innumerable crevasses with varied fortune.

  • Retracing the way out of the broken ice, we steered in a south-westerly direction, just above the line of serac and crevassed ice.

  • Whether a stone underfoot gave way, or whether the Admiral's voice brought down a serac of rotten wall, is not clear.

    The Astonishing History of Troy Town

    Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

  • It is heavily crevassed, as though it once formed the serac portion of a glacier.


    Sir Ernest Shackleton

British Dictionary definitions for serac



a pinnacle of ice among crevasses on a glacier, usually on a steep slope

Word Origin for sérac

C19: from Swiss French: a variety of white cheese (hence the ice that it resembles) from Medieval Latin serācium, from Latin serum whey
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