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[ree-fluhks] /ˈriˌflʌks/
a flowing back; ebb.
Origin of reflux
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Medieval Latin refluxus. See re-, flux Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for reflux
Historical Examples
  • The heat and cold which surround the globe are in a state of constant and universal flux and reflux.

    Principles of Geology Charles Lyell
  • An old word, signifying the reflux of the waves by the force of the wind.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • Sole dispenser of money, it cannot omit the oldest and most obvious means of amassing wealth by the flux and reflux of paper.

  • Flux and reflux, the fire and the water, the water and the fire!

  • I now saw a man as a wave recoiled lying close by the boat in the reflux.

    George Borrow and His Circle Clement King Shorter
  • From it and to it, in endless flux and reflux, the life blood goes.

    Looking Backward Edward Bellamy
  • So do flux and reflux—the rhythm of change—alternate and persist in everything under the sky.

  • It tends to make and to break fortunes, by the flux and reflux of paper.

  • To recall but one instance, what is the constant flux and reflux of the rivers and seas but Perpetual Motion?

    Perpetual Motion Percy Verance
  • The ebb and flow of these questionings is eternal, as the flux and reflux of the sea itself.

    Toilers of the Sea Victor Hugo
British Dictionary definitions for reflux


(chem) to boil or be boiled in a vessel attached to a condenser, so that the vapour condenses and flows back into the vessel
  1. an act of refluxing
  2. (as modifier): a reflux condenser
the act or an instance of flowing back; ebb
Word Origin
C15: from Medieval Latin refluxus, from Latin refluere to flow back
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 reflux

early 15c., "a flowing back (of the sea, etc.)," from Medieval Latin refluxus, from Latin re- "back, again" (see re-) + fluxus "a flowing" (see flux). Digestive sense is recorded from 1937.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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reflux in Medicine

reflux re·flux (rē'flŭks')

  1. A flowing back.

  2. The process of refluxing.

v. re·fluxed, re·flux·ing, re·flux·es
To boil a liquid in a vessel attached to a condenser so that the vapors continuously condense for reboiling.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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