Dictionary

cataract

noun cat·a·ract \ˈka-tə-ˌrakt\

medical : a condition in which a part of your eye (called the lens) becomes cloudy and you cannot see well

: a large waterfall

Full Definition of CATARACT

1
[Middle English, from Middle French or Medieval Latin; Middle French catharacte, from Medieval Latin cataracta, from Latin, portcullis] :  a clouding of the lens of the eye or of its surrounding transparent membrane that obstructs the passage of light
2
a obsolete :  waterspout
b :  waterfall; especially :  a large one over a precipice
c :  steep rapids in a river
d :  downpour, flood <cataracts of rain> <cataracts of information>
cat·a·rac·tous \ˌka-tə-ˈrak-təs\ adjective

Examples of CATARACT

  1. <the roaring cataract is one of the park's most majestic sights>
  2. <in spring the melting snows usually produce a cataract that inundates the valley>

Origin of CATARACT

Latin cataracta waterfall, portcullis, from Greek kataraktēs, from katarassein to dash down, from kata- + arassein to strike, dash
First Known Use: 14th century

Related to CATARACT

Synonyms
cascade, waterfall, fall(s)
Antonyms
drought (also drouth)

Other Geology Terms

anthracite, boulder, cwm, erratic, igneous, intrusive, mesa, sedimentary, silt, swale
CATARACT Defined for Kids

cataract

noun cat·a·ract \ˈka-tə-ˌrakt\

Definition of CATARACT for Kids

1
:  a clouding of the lens of the eye or of the cover around the lens that blocks the passage of light
2
:  a large waterfall
3
:  a sudden rush or flow like a waterfall
Medical Dictionary

cataract

noun cat·a·ract \ˈkat-ə-ˌrakt\

Medical Definition of CATARACT

:  a clouding of the lens of the eye or its surrounding transparent membrane that obstructs the passage of light

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July 01, 2015
precarious Hear it
not certain, secure, or steady
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