1) water turned back on its course by an obstruction or an opposing flow
2) the body or accumulation of water caused by the above especially when it overflows into lowlands
3) a stillwater section of a stream or river beside the main flow but separated by a ridge of land (or an arm of the sea similarly separated from the open ocean), or habitat at the margin of a riffle or run. Sometimes used for water that has backed up compared to its normal flow or for an area off the main part of a lake; often separated from the source during dry seasons
4) white water (frothy water in rapids, breakers or waterfalls)

Dictionary of ichthyology. 2009.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Backwater — or Backwaters may refer to:* Backwater (Brian Eno), a song by Brian Eno * Backwater (novel), a novel by Joan Bauer * Backwater (single), a song recorded by the Meat Puppets * Backwater Reservoir, a reservoir in north west Angus, Scotland *… …   Wikipedia

  • backwater — [bak′wôt΄ər] n. 1. water moved backward or held back by a dam, tide, etc. 2. stagnant water in a small stream or inlet 3. a place or condition regarded as stagnant, backward, etc. [a cultural backwater] adj. like a backwater; backward …   English World dictionary

  • Backwater — Back wa ter, n. [Back, a. or adv. + water. ] 1. Water turned back in its course by an obstruction, an opposing current, or the flow of the tide, as in a sewer or river channel, or across a river bar. [1913 Webster] 2. An accumulation of water… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • backwater — late 14c., water behind a dam, from BACK (Cf. back) + WATER (Cf. water). Hence flat water without a current near a flowing river, as in a mill race (1820); figurative use of this for any flat, dull place is from 1899 …   Etymology dictionary

  • backwater — ► NOUN 1) a part of a river not reached by the current, where the water is stagnant. 2) a place or state in which no development is taking place …   English terms dictionary

  • backwater — [[t]bæ̱kwɔːtə(r)[/t]] backwaters 1) N COUNT: usu with supp A backwater is a place that is isolated. ...a quiet rural backwater. 2) N COUNT: usu with supp (disapproval) If you refer to a place or institution as a backwater, you think it is not… …   English dictionary

  • backwater — n. a cultural backwater * * * [ bækˌwɔːtə] a cultural backwater …   Combinatory dictionary

  • backwater — /bak waw teuhr, wot euhr/, n. 1. water held or forced back, as by a dam, flood, or tide. 2. a place or state of stagnant backwardness: This area of the country is a backwater that continues to resist progress. 3. an isolated, peaceful place. 4. a …   Universalium

  • backwater — 1. noun a) The water held back by a dam or other obstruction Its a volume for those who delight in exploring the backwaters of nineteenth century opera b) A remote place; somewhere that remains unaffected by new events, progresses, ideas, etc.… …   Wiktionary

  • backwater — back|wa|ter [ˈbækwo:tə US wo:tər, wa: ] n 1.) a very quiet place not influenced by outside events or new ideas used to show disapproval ▪ a rural backwater 2.) a part of a river away from the main part, where the water does not move …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • backwater — back|wa|ter [ bæk,wɔtər ] noun singular 1. ) a place, situation, or organization in which nothing exciting or important happens, and in which people still have old fashioned ideas: The city was seen as a provincial backwater. 2. ) an area of… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

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