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breakwater

[breyk-waw-ter, -wot-er] /ˈbreɪkˌwɔ tər, -ˌwɒt ər/
noun
1.
a barrier that breaks the force of waves, as before a harbor.
Origin
1715-1725
1715-25; break + water
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for breakwater
  • The harbor is formed by two moles and a breakwater, on which latter is a lighthouse.
British Dictionary definitions for breakwater

breakwater

/ˈbreɪkˌwɔːtə/
noun
1.
Also called mole. a massive wall built out into the sea to protect a shore or harbour from the force of waves
2.
another name for groyne
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
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Word Origin and History for breakwater
n.

1721, from break (v.) + water (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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breakwater in Science
breakwater
  (brāk'wô'tər)   
An offshore barrier, such as a jetty, that protects a harbor or shore from the full impact of waves.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for breakwater

artificial offshore structure protecting a harbour, anchorage, or marina basin from water waves. Breakwaters intercept longshore currents and tend to prevent beach erosion. Over the long term, however, the processes of erosion and sedimentation cannot be effectively overcome by interfering with currents and the supply of sediment. Deposition of sediment at one site will be compensated for by erosion elsewhere; this phenomenon occurs whether one breakwater or a series of such structures is erected. Compare jetty.

Learn more about breakwater with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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