(not in technical use) a large, destructive ocean wave, produced by a seaquake, hurricane, or strong wind.: Compare tsunami.
either of the two great wavelike swellings of the ocean surface that move around the earth on opposite sides and give rise to tide, caused by the attraction of the moon and sun.
any widespread or powerful movement, opinion, or tendency: a tidal wave of public indignation.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use tidal wave in a sentence
The coronavirus has wreaked havoc with so many lives and livelihoods over the past 12 months that it would be foolhardy to suggest the shuttering of a musical is anything but a single bad ripple in a tidal wave of misfortune.‘Six’ seemed bound for Broadway glory. Then a pandemic shut it down on opening night. | Peter Marks | March 4, 2021 | Washington Post
Parents, in particular, are constantly battling the tidal wave of kids’ clothes, toys and now schoolwork and supplies that threatens to take over every surface and room.Shopping with the pros: Storage solutions to help corral kid clutter | Mari-Jane Williams | February 18, 2021 | Washington Post
'A tidal wave of need'Since the pandemic, school districts and states have tried to beef up resources for young people in myriad ways — though nowhere do officials say what they are doing is enough.Partly hidden by isolation, many of the nation’s schoolchildren struggle with mental health | Donna St. George, Valerie Strauss | January 21, 2021 | Washington Post
The finding is adding to concerns about the stability of a financial sector that already is facing a potential tidal wave of $99 billion in bad debt due to the pandemic.Boris Johnson wants young Brits to buy homes—even if that means banks have to lend like it’s 2006 | Jeremy Kahn | October 7, 2020 | Fortune
If the conditions are right, heat from the gushing tidal waves could exceed heat from Jupiter.Jupiter’s moons could keep each other warm by raising tidal waves | Lisa Grossman | August 6, 2020 | Science News
In "Pamela 1" Louie wades deeper into the gender pool, doubtlessly inviting a tidal wave of backlash.Louie Attempts Rape (and Explores the ‘Nice Guy’ Phenomenon) | Amy Zimmerman | June 3, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Tempest, hurricane, tidal wave, tsunami, earthquake, or Big Bang?How Marine Le Pen and France’s Ultra-Right Won the Day | Tracy McNicoll | May 26, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
But the public indignation that was slow to rise at first is now coming on like a tidal wave.A Hashtag May Help Rescue Jihadi-Enslaved Nigerian Schoolgirls | Nina Strochlic | May 6, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
In the primaries, Jeb Bush just might be drowned in a tidal wave of tea.
But this tidal wave of systematic brutality has resulted in only 30 convictions.War’s Silent Scourge: Sexual Violence Against Women | Peter Westmacott, Melanne Verveer | November 25, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
A tidal wave rolls landward, and twenty thousand human beings are drowned, or crushed to death.God and my Neighbour | Robert Blatchford
Each time the tidal wave sweeps in toward the shore it urges the finer particles of sediment along with it.Outlines of the Earth's History | Nathaniel Southgate Shaler
The mighty conflict of ideas had swept round the globe like a tidal wave of the ocean.The Boys of '61 | Charles Carleton Coffin.
"It must be the tidal wave that Phyllis spoke about," thought Patty.The Nicest Girl in the School | Angela Brazil
The huge tidal wave that swept McKenzie and his men to their graves in the chilly depths of the Atlantic did more than that.The Viking Blood | Frederick William Wallace
British Dictionary definitions for tidal wave
a name (not accepted in technical usage) for tsunami
an unusually large incoming wave, often caused by high winds and spring tides
a forceful and widespread movement in public opinion, action, etc
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 tidal wave
Either of the two swells or crests of surface ocean water created by the gravitational effects of the Moon and Sun and circling the globe on opposite sides to create the daily periods of high and low tides. Also called tidal bulge
An unusual rise in the level of water along a seacoast, as from a storm or a combination of wind and tide. Also called storm surge
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.