noun (1)
\ ˈkrēk How to pronounce creek (audio) , ˈkrik How to pronounce creek (audio) \

Definition of creek

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a natural stream of water normally smaller than and often tributary to a river
2 chiefly British : a small inlet or bay narrower and extending farther inland than a cove
3 archaic : a narrow or winding passage
up the creek
: in a difficult or perplexing situation


noun (2)
\ ˈkrēk How to pronounce Creek (audio) \

Definition of Creek (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an American Indian confederacy of peoples chiefly of Muskogean stock of Alabama, Georgia, and Florida
2 : a member of any of the Creek peoples
3 : the Muskogean language of the Creek Indians

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Synonyms for creek

Synonyms: Noun (1)

beck [British], bourn (or bourne), brook, brooklet, burn [British], gill [British], rill, rivulet, run [chiefly Midland], runlet, runnel, streamlet

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Examples of creek in a Sentence

Noun (1)

The children waded in the creek. The coast is dotted with tiny creeks.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Officers found the suspect — later identified as 53-year-old Mark A. Naugle, of Scottsburg — standing in a creek which borders the fairgrounds property, Huls said. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "Indiana man fatally shot by police after refusing to drop a hammer, officials say," 5 July 2019 She was found by a fisherman in the creek near the dead end of Cypress Business Park Drive. Christopher Harress |,, "’No foul play’ in death of woman found floating in Mobile creek, say police," 28 June 2019 The Butte County Sheriff’s Office advised using caution in creeks and rivers as the wet winter has caused fast-moving water. Chico Enterprise-record Staff Reports, The Mercury News, "Paradise man swept away at Feather River’s Cable Pools," 21 June 2019 There’s no swimming in the creek but visitors can canoe and fish. Kellie Hwang, Indianapolis Star, "10 of the best campgrounds within a few hours of Indianapolis," 21 June 2019 In 2016, the body of Emily Blue Bird, 24, a mother of two, was found by a grassroots search party initiated by the family in a creek on South Dakota’s Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Eric Ogden, Marie Claire, "The Invisible Victims," 10 June 2019 Longmont water resource officials and Colorado Parks and Wildlife said residents need to be prepared for high water in local creeks and ditches. Longmont Times-call, The Denver Post, "Officials warn some Colorado waterways running high," 8 June 2019 In the District, one of the first U.S. cities to experiment with the dockless model, bikes have been found dismantled, dumped in creeks, and abandoned along highways. Luz Lazo, Washington Post, "Theft and destruction of dockless bikes a growing problem," 1 July 2018 The tiny crabs, their shells still soft, are caught in local creeks by fishermen. Manipadma Jena, The Christian Science Monitor, "With tides rising, Bangladeshi farmers turn to flood-resistant crabs," 19 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'creek.' 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 creek

Noun (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Noun (2)

1725, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for creek

Noun (1)

Middle English crike, creke, from Old Norse -kriki bend

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Statistics for creek

Last Updated

9 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for creek

The first known use of creek was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for creek



English Language Learners Definition of creek

US : a small stream


\ ˈkrēk How to pronounce creek (audio) , ˈkrik\

Kids Definition of creek

: a stream of water usually larger than a brook and smaller than a river


\ ˈkrēk How to pronounce Creek (audio) \

Kids Definition of Creek

1 : a confederacy of American Indian people once occupying most of Alabama and Georgia
2 : the language of the Creek people

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More from Merriam-Webster on creek

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with creek

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for creek

Spanish Central: Translation of creek

Nglish: Translation of creek for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of creek for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about creek

Comments on creek

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


a small bunch of flowers

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