Definition of freshet in English:


Pronunciation /ˈfreSHət/ /ˈfrɛʃət/


  • 1The flood of a river from heavy rain or melted snow.

    ‘Particularly high spring freshets would flood the quarries and put off the opening of the season.’
    • ‘Natural freshets, prolonged infusions of freshwater from the rain or rivers, can kill oysters in a matter of weeks, and Fox suspected that something similar had destroyed his crop.’
    • ‘Remember, the Fraser cutthroat fishery is hugely impacted, if not terminated, when the freshet begins.’
    • ‘The freshets also provided enough water for large fish like sturgeons to maneuver their way upstream.’
    • ‘Nitrogen concentrations, which had remained level before the freshets, have risen, according to the data.’
    • ‘We have little save tradition respecting storms, freshets, and earthquakes in the olden times.’
    • ‘Thousands of citizens of Grozny who lost their homes as a result of a freshet last year have not gotten new flats so far.’
    • ‘It wasn't until a concrete wall was installed upstream that the destructive periodic spring freshets could be controlled.’
    • ‘The annual spring snowmelt freshets of the Fraser River system pose the principal flood hazard to those occupying its floodplain areas.’
    • ‘Major floods and annual freshets continued to pummel the structure with debris.’
    • ‘This was mainly due to increased flow and suspended sediment during summer and fall freshets.’
    • ‘Reduction in freshets and minor floods would reduce transportation of plant propagules.’
    • ‘Understanding the variability of the freshet as well as its sensitivity to climate change will be critical in the future in areas with a mining heritage, such as much of the Yukon, Alaska, and Russia.’
    • ‘A meeting about the 2007 freshet and potential for flooding was held by the Township of Langley and the City of Abbotsford at Trinity Western University on Tuesday, May 15, and was attended by more than 400 residents.’
    • ‘The last time that happened was in 1894 when a spring freshet sent water surging through the bridge at Eburne and over the north side of dykes.’
    • ‘After another couple of minutes she extended one leg to reach over and dip her foot in the freshet.’
    inundation, swamping, deluge
    1. 1.1A rush of fresh water flowing into the sea.
      ‘The springs and freshets which had been loosed in the course of the city's excavation had also been trained, and streams ran cheerfully down rough, natural-looking beds carefully inset into the smooth floors of passages and halls.’
      • ‘This was perhaps due to the fall-spawning habit of the brook trout; the eggs of the spring-spawning rainbow and cutthroat were more likely to be washed out by freshets following spring snowmelt.’
      • ‘As spring freshets go in British Columbia's Central Interior, the year 2000 was relatively sane.’
      • ‘The spring freshet and clean up in the fall of 1897 electrified the whole mining world.’
      • ‘Below the football players and dog-walkers of Marine Park is a culvert that, in theory, still carries the freshet which once thinned the salt water of the Stromme Kill.’
      • ‘Drifts, or mud, or freshets do not suspend our social intercourse.’
      • ‘For example, freshets can displace individuals, wash out nests, and locally eliminate populations.’
      • ‘Summer freshets flush and erode the sand, keeping the ridges moving.’


Late 16th century probably from Old French freschete, diminutive of freis ‘fresh’.