[tawr-uhnt, tor-]


a stream of water flowing with great rapidity and violence.
a rushing, violent, or abundant and unceasing stream of anything: a torrent of lava.
a violent downpour of rain.
a violent, tumultuous, or overwhelming flow: a torrent of abuse.


Origin of torrent

1595–1605; < Latin torrent- (stem of torrēns) seething, literally, burning, present participle of torrēre to burn, parch; see torrid, -ent

Synonyms for torrent Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for torrent

Contemporary Examples of torrent

Historical Examples of torrent

  • Let us rejoice that one such partisan was now at hand to stem the torrent of abuse.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • After that, in a torrent, came Harriet's declaration of independence.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • The Kavirondo, his eyes rolling, shot forth a torrent of language.

    The Leopard Woman

    Stewart Edward White

  • But are you voluble enough to drown all sense in a torrent of words?

  • It all poured out of him in a torrent, his hand on my knee most of the time.

    The Underdog

    F. Hopkinson Smith

British Dictionary definitions for torrent



a fast, voluminous, or violent stream of water or other liquid
an overwhelming flow of thoughts, words, sound, etc
computing a file that controls the transfer of data in a BitTorrent systemSee BitTorrent


rare like or relating to a torrent

Word Origin for torrent

C17: from French, from Latin torrēns (noun), from torrēns (adjective) burning, from torrēre to burn
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 torrent

c.1600, from French torrent, from Latin torrentem (nominative torrens) "rushing stream," originally "roaring, boiling, burning, parching," present participle of torrere "to parch" (see terrain). Sense of "any onrush" (of words, feelings, etc.) first recorded 1640s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper