bayou

noun
bay·​ou | \ˈbī-(ˌ)ü, -(ˌ)ō\

Definition of bayou 

1 : a creek, secondary watercourse, or minor river that is tributary to another body of water

2 : any of various usually marshy or sluggish bodies of water

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for bayou

Synonyms

affluent, branch, confluent, feeder, influent, tributary

Antonyms

distributary, effluent

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of bayou in a Sentence

a small creek that is the bayou of a larger stream

Recent Examples on the Web

Her journey through the Louisiana bayou in search of an antidote eventually ends with her back in human form—and married to a handsome prince. Erich Schwartzel, WSJ, "Disney Reanimates Portions of Upcoming Film After Criticism for Lightening Black Character’s Skin," 20 Sep. 2018 No Inner Loop neighborhood was immune to Harvey’s destruction, but the storm’s impact varied greatly, depending in part on how close streets were to a bayou—the waterways that run through the city. Nancy Keates, WSJ, "How Harvey Transformed House-Hunting in Houston," 24 Oct. 2018 From time to time, when the bayou was low, especially daring Houstonians would go on foraging missions that sometimes had deadly consequences. Chris Gray, Houston Chronicle, "Expansive exhibit highlights Houston’s quiet but vital role during Civil War," 11 July 2018 The festival takes place May 25-27 on the grounds of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral, on the bayou where Robert E. Lee Boulevard meets St. Bernard Avenue. Ann Maloney, NOLA.com, "New Orleans Greek Fest invites you to dine, wine on the bayou," 22 May 2018 Picture-perfect weather, exquisite tablescapes and a 10-course feast at Lisa and Michael Holthouse's villa-on-the-bayou is the very reason hashtag #nofilter even exists. Amber Elliott, Houston Chronicle, "Celeb chefs from La Table, Le Colonial, Canopy and more serve 10-course Italian feast in Memorial," 8 May 2018 An 18-wheeler crashed off a North Loop feeder, landing partially off a bridge and spilling its load of produce into the bayou below, according to Metro Video. Samantha Ketterer, Houston Chronicle, "18-wheeler carrying produce overturns in NE Houston," 13 July 2018 It got lost in the dark and wandered into the bayou. Marwa Eltagouri, Washington Post, "The deadliest bridge collapses in U.S. history," 16 Mar. 2018 Parade debris that landed in a ditch and eventually flowed into the bayou. Carol Wolfram, NOLA.com, "Every piece of trash has a story to tell: Slidell Bayou Cleanup 2018," 12 Mar. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of bayou

1763, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bayou

borrowed from Louisiana French, earlier bayouque, perhaps borrowed from early Choctaw *bayok, whence Choctaw bo·k "creek, river"

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about bayou

Dictionary Entries near bayou

bayong

Bayonne

bayott

bayou

bayou bass

bay plum

bay point

Statistics for bayou

Last Updated

5 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for bayou

The first known use of bayou was in 1763

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for bayou

bayou

noun

English Language Learners Definition of bayou

: an area of water in the southern U.S. in which the water moves very slowly and is filled with many plants

bayou

noun
bay·​ou | \ˈbī-ü, \

Kids Definition of bayou

: a body of water (as a creek) that flows slowly through marshy land

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on bayou

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bayou

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bayou

Spanish Central: Translation of bayou

Nglish: Translation of bayou for Spanish Speakers

Comments on bayou

What made you want to look up bayou? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

amusing and light sparring with words

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!