Definition of basin
1a : an open usually circular vessel with sloping or curving sides used typically for holding water for washing a new washstand and basinb chiefly British : a bowl used especially in cookingc : the quantity contained in a basin spilled a basin of water on the floor
2a : a dock built in a harbor or a river that is noticeably affected by the tideb : an enclosed or partly enclosed water area
3 geography a : a large or small depression in the surface of the land or in the ocean floor the relatively shallow basin of the Baltic Seab : the entire tract of country drained by a river and its tributaries flooding in the Amazon river basinc : a great depression in the surface of the lithosphere occupied by an ocean
4 geology : a broad area of the earth beneath which the strata (see stratum 2a) dip usually from the sides toward the center
basinalplay \-sən-əl\ adjective
basinedplay \-sənd\ adjective
basinfulplay \-ˌfu̇l\ noun
Examples of basin in a Sentence
a basin of cold water
the drainage basin of a river
the Great Basin of the western U.S.
Recent Examples of basin from the Web
Tour the Gothic structure that sits between the reservoirs basins, view items and films from Louisville Water’s archives and staff will answer questions.
In the most recent case, waters in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian ocean basins began rising in mid-2014 and bleaching started in 2015.
On average, the third storm doesn’t form until July 5 in the basin, which includes the Caribbean and the Gulf.
A 2005 bleaching, the worst on record in the Atlantic basin, wiped out half the U.S. coral reefs in the Caribbean.
Plastic basins catch the grease run-off along the museum floor.
If there’s significant precipitation in the Boise basin, the inflows could spike up again.
The bone is from a Harlan's ground sloth, a mammal that roamed the Los Angeles basin 11,000 years ago.
It’s also home to many endemic fish in the Volta River basin.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'basin'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of basin
Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French bacin, going back to Vulgar Latin *baccīnum (whence Hellenized Late Latin bacchinon “disk with two wooden dishes”), derivative from a base *bak- or *bakk- (whence Latin bacar, bacriō “kind of vessel,” early Medieval Latin bacarium, baccarium, becario “pitcher, vessel”), of obscure origin
First Known Use: 13th centurySee Words from the same year
BASIN Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of basin for English Language Learners
: a kitchen sink
: a large bowl that is used for mixing, cooking, or serving food
: the amount contained in a basin
BASIN Defined for Kids
Definition of basin for Students
1 : a wide shallow usually round dish or bowl for holding liquids
2 : the amount that a basin holds a basin of cold water
3 : the land drained by a river and its branches
4 : a partly enclosed area of water for anchoring ships
Medical Definition of basin
1: an open usually circular vessel with sloping or curving sides used typically for holding water for washing
2: the quantity contained in a basin
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up basin? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).