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[hahy-druh-pleyn] /ˈhaɪ drəˌpleɪn/
a seaplane.
an attachment to an airplane enabling it to glide on the water.
a light, high-powered boat, especially one with hydrofoils or a stepped bottom, designed to plane along the surface of the water at very high speeds.
a horizontal rudder for submerging or elevating a submarine.
verb (used without object), hydroplaned, hydroplaning.
to skim over water in the manner of a hydroplane.
to travel in a hydroplane.
Also, aquaplane. (of a vehicular tire or vehicle) to ride on a film of water on a wet surface with a resulting decrease in braking and steering effectiveness.
Origin of hydroplane
1900-05; hydro-1 + plane1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for hydroplane
Historical Examples
  • As we set sail, a whirlwind lifted the ship and she became a hydroplane, sailing through the air for seven days and seven nights.

    Essays on the Greek Romances Elizabeth Hazelton Haight
  • We called for the coast guard when a hydroplane crashed on Rock Harbor.

    The Crystal Ball Roy J. Snell
  • Conditions here are ideal for the college regatta and for the difficult feats of the hydroplane.

  • With her own eyes Greta had seen a helpless one carried from a hydroplane to this place.

    The Phantom Violin Roy J. Snell
  • Would the hydroplane be able to ride such a sea in safety, in case necessity compelled them to alight upon its swelling bosom?

    The Aeroplane Boys Flight John Luther Langworthy
  • A moment later "Diving stations," and to the hydroplane men, "Take her on down."

    H.M.S. ---- Klaxon
  • I wish I knew enough to make this into a hydroplane, said Frank, as he peered eagerly toward the boat they were pursuing.

    Two Boys of the Battleship Frank V. Webster
  • And it really can sail in the air or on the icelike a hydroplane?

  • You dont want to smash that hydroplane and wheel any more than they are.

  • "I've got a hydroplane which I'll sell this spring to some yachtsman," said Manby.

    The Voice on the Wire Eustace Hale Ball
British Dictionary definitions for hydroplane


a motorboat equipped with hydrofoils or with a shaped bottom that raises its hull out of the water at high speeds
an attachment to an aircraft to enable it to glide along the surface of water
another name (esp US) for a seaplane
a horizontal vane on the hull of a submarine for controlling its vertical motion
(intransitive) (of a boat) to rise out of the water in the manner of a hydroplane
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 hydroplane

"motorboat that glides on the surface of water," 1895, coined by U.S. engineer Harvey D. Williams ["Sibley Journal of Engineering," Cornell University, vol. X, p.81]; from hydro- + plane (from airplane).


by 1908, "to skim the surface of water by use of hydroplanes," from hydroplane (n.). Meaning "skid on a thin layer of water" (especially of automobile tires) first recorded 1962, properly aquaplane (itself from 1961 in this sense). Related: Hydroplaned; hydroplaning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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