foun·​tain | \ ˈfau̇n-tᵊn How to pronounce fountain (audio) \

Definition of fountain

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the source from which something proceeds or is supplied
2 : a spring of water issuing from the earth
3 : an artificially produced jet of water also : the structure from which it rises
4 : a reservoir containing a liquid that can be drawn off as needed


fountained; fountaining; fountains

Definition of fountain (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to flow or spout like a fountain

transitive verb

: to cause to flow like a fountain

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Examples of fountain in a Sentence

Noun The crowd gathered around the fountain in the plaza. an endless fountain of inspiration
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun At the entrance, residents are greeted by a marble fountain and a valet. New York Times, 11 July 2021 One way to work up a good sweat without dripping all over the place like a human water fountain is rocking a good old-fashioned headband. Tim Kohut, BGR, 2 July 2021 Dorothy Maskara, a high-school student, skateboarded over to Washington Square Park on Wednesday afternoon and wrote NO C*PS IN WASH in purple chalk on the ground next to the fountain. Tim Donnelly, Curbed, 5 June 2021 The southern entrance has a 42-by-15-foot wall of cascading water inspired by the fountain in New York’s Paley Park. Maria Halkias, Dallas News, 6 May 2021 The master suite includes dual baths and a large sitting area that overlooks the lake and fountain. Dallas News, 3 July 2021 The store will sell pocketknives, pocket flashlights, fountain and tactical pens and notebooks, Nelson added. Evan Frank, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 3 July 2021 There’s a playground at Kensington Palace, a fountain in nearby Hyde Park and a walkway at St. James’s Palace. Washington Post, 1 July 2021 Its soda fountain was the scene of 1950s civil rights demonstrations when African American patrons were told they could not be seated or served at the fountain counter. Jacques Kelly,, 30 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Explore Echo Park Lake’s signature lotus beds and fountain on a swan pedal boat. Lisa Boone, Los Angeles Times, 1 Dec. 2020 Coke is also planning to halt retail-store sales of Hubert’s Lemonade, limiting the brand to fountain machines only, the spokeswoman said. Jennifer Maloney, WSJ, 4 Oct. 2020 Starting May 3, Kilauea has fountained lava and flung ash and rocks from its summit, destroying hundreds of homes, closing key highways, and prompting health warnings. Sophia Yan And Malcolm Ritter, The Christian Science Monitor, 7 June 2018 Geologists at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory say that lava is consistently fountaining from Fissure 8, reaching heights up to 180 feet, feeding the flow. Alan Taylor, The Atlantic, 6 June 2018 Scientists say the lava leaking from the Kilauea volcano is fountaining up to 250 feet in the air and flowing at much higher-than-normal temperatures. Trevor Hughes, USA TODAY, 1 June 2018 Volcano scientists are also captivated, like much of the general public, by the sheer spectacle of the eruption: visions of red-hot lava fountaining out of cracks in the Earth and towering columns of ash shooting five miles into the sky. Author: Scott Wilson, Sarah Kaplan, Anchorage Daily News, 24 May 2018 The lava from these fissures can sometimes fountain high into the air, driven by pressurized gases that also escape through the fissures, but there is no plume of ash. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, 11 May 2018 Lava fountains 300 ft high during May 5 fissure eruption in Leilani Estates. Don Sweeney, sacbee, 7 May 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1903, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for fountain


Middle English, from Anglo-French funtaine, fontaine, from Late Latin fontana, from Latin, feminine of fontanus of a spring, from font-, fons

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Time Traveler for fountain

Time Traveler

The first known use of fountain was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near fountain



fountain brush

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Last Updated

24 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Fountain.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for fountain



English Language Learners Definition of fountain

: a device or structure that sends a stream of water into the air in a garden, park, etc. also : the water that rises from a fountain
: something that rises into the air like a fountain of water
: the source of something


foun·​tain | \ ˈfau̇n-tᵊn How to pronounce fountain (audio) \

Kids Definition of fountain

1 : an artificial stream or spray of water (as for drinking or ornament) or the device from which it comes
2 : source sense 1 He was a fountain of wisdom.
3 : a spring of water coming from the earth

More from Merriam-Webster on fountain

Nglish: Translation of fountain for Spanish Speakers

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


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