back·​wash | \ ˈbak-ˌwȯsh How to pronounce backwash (audio) , -ˌwäsh \

Definition of backwash

1 : a backward flow or movement (as of water or air) produced especially by a propelling force also : the fluid that is moving backward

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Examples of backwash in a Sentence

a general recession was the backwash of the crisis in the housing market
Recent Examples on the Web Retain their own then let the initial wave of big money spending wash over them before searching the backwash for good deals. David Moore, Dallas News, 17 Mar. 2021 This was part of the backwash from the rising secularism of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Joan Acocella, The New Yorker, 15 Mar. 2021 The backwash from waves hitting the shore made the surfing there bumpy. Sophie Cocke, ProPublica, 5 Dec. 2020 Just like backwash hitting the surf, the result could be turbulent. Jen Schwartz, Scientific American, 1 Aug. 2018 The captain also had to keep the unicorn from getting caught up in the backwash of the ship’s engine. Iliana Magra, New York Times, 28 Aug. 2020 The burn is caused by a backwash of stomach acid into the esophagus and may be triggered by lying down within three hours after a meal, since gravity acts as an important barrier to reversed acid flow. Janis Graham, Redbook, 28 Nov. 2017 Now times have changed, and Chinese scientists at U.S. universities are trapped in the backwash. David Armstrong, ProPublica, 18 Mar. 2020 This generation does not intend to founder in the backwash of the coming age of green energy. Philip B. Russell, The Mercury News, 19 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'backwash.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of backwash

1837, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for backwash

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The first known use of backwash was in 1837

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Cite this Entry

“Backwash.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jun. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on backwash

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for backwash

Nglish: Translation of backwash for Spanish Speakers


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