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[ground-swel] /ˈgraʊndˌswɛl/
a broad, deep swell or rolling of the sea, due to a distant storm or gale.
any surge of support, approval, or enthusiasm, especially among the general public:
a groundswell of political support for the governor.
Origin of groundswell
1810-20; ground1 + swell Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for groundswell
  • Every effort to address it has provoked a groundswell of angry obstructionism and demagoguery.
  • And there doesn't seem to be a groundswell of legislative enthusiasm.
  • Moreover, the protesters claim they tap a hidden groundswell of support, which sometimes breaks through the fear barrier.
  • But despite the groundswell of enthusiasm, these sites face an uncertain economic future.
  • The speech won't generate a groundswell of support but will likely both steady the base and appeal to moderates.
  • Sadly, the groundswell movement that never was was destined never to be.
  • That's nothing to be sniffed at, but hardly a groundswell of outrage.
  • There is a groundswell of foreign direct investment in the region.
  • Let there be a groundswell of public opinion against all these bad bankers and bad politicians.
  • But arguing that the treaty is relatively harmless won't create a groundswell of enthusiasm for it.
British Dictionary definitions for groundswell


a considerable swell of the sea, often caused by a distant storm or earthquake or by the passage of waves into shallow water
a strong public feeling or opinion that is detectable even though not openly expressed: a groundswell of discontent
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 groundswell

1818, from ground (n.) + swell (n.). Figurative sense is attested from 1817.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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