I. verb Etymology: Middle English, from Old English flōwan; akin to Old High German flouwen to rinse, wash, Latin pluere to rain, Greek plein to sail, float Date: before 12th century intransitive verb 1. a. (1) to issue or move in a stream (2) circulate b. to move with a continual change of place among the constituent particles <
molasses flows slowly
2. rise <
the tide ebbs and flows
3. abound <
a land flowing with natural resources
4. a. to proceed smoothly and readily <
conversation flowed easily
b. to have a smooth continuity 5. to hang loose and billowing <
her gown flowed around her
6. to derive from a source ; come <
the wealth that flows from trade
7. to deform under stress without cracking or rupturing — used especially of minerals and rocks 8. menstruate transitive verb 1. to cause to flow 2. to discharge in a flow Synonyms: see springflowingly adverb II. noun Date: 15th century 1. an act of flowing 2. a. flood 1a b. flood 2 <
the tide's ebb and flow
3. a. a smooth uninterrupted movement or progress <
a flow of information
b. stream; also a mass of material which has flowed when molten <
an old lava flow
c. the direction of movement or development <
go with the flow
4. the quantity that flows in a certain time <
a gauge that measures fuel flow
5. menstruation 6. a. the motion characteristic of fluids b. a continuous transfer of energy

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


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