- a sudden, almost overwhelming, outpouring: a spate of angry words.
- a flood or inundation.
- a river flooding its banks.
- a sudden or heavy rainstorm.
Origin of spate
Examples from the Web for spate
In cases such as a spate of recent suicides by adolescents who were bullied on Facebook, the perpetrators were well known.Outed Madeleine McCann Troll Kills Herself. But Millions Live On Online.
Barbie Latza Nadeau
October 6, 2014
She also blasted the spate of “Katherine Heigl-y type things where women…have no reason to exist other than to get a guy.”‘Clueless’: How the Greatest Clique of the ‘90s Transformed Into A Shakespearean Tragedy
May 30, 2014
This was followed in 2012 by a spate of media articles in the US trying to grab attention using similar headlines.The Truth About Older People Having More Sex
January 22, 2014
The protests are also a bonanza for the European Union, which has been suffering from a spate of bad PR recently.Ukraine’s Eurolution Is a PR Godsend for the Struggling E.U.
December 11, 2013
Kenya invaded Somalia in response to a spate of kidnappings in the fall of 2011.Slaughter in Nairobi: Bloody Siege in Shopping Mall Kills Dozens
September 22, 2013
His joy welled up and overflowed in him as overflows a river in time of spate.St. Martin's Summer
A look from Spate silenced him, but the President had not caught the slip.
"Not but what Wakefield is enterprising," Spate added, anxiously.
Spate could rise to an emergency; the other committeemen thanked him with their eyes.
It was about the first day of October, and we had enjoyed a “spate.”Angling Sketches
- a fast flow, rush, or outpouringa spate of words
- mainly British a sudden floodthe rivers were in spate
- mainly British a sudden heavy downpour
Word Origin and History for spate
early 15c., originally Scottish and northern English, "a sudden flood, especially one caused by heavy rains or a snowmelt," of unknown origin. Perhaps from Old French espoit "flood," from Dutch spuiten "to flow, spout;" related to spout. Figurative sense of "unusual quantity" is attested from 1610s.