\ ˈtrȯf How to pronounce trough (audio) , ˈtrȯth, by bakers often ˈtrō \
plural troughs\ ˈtrȯfs How to pronounce troughs (audio) , ˈtrȯvz ; ˈtrȯths , ˈtrȯ(t͟h)z ; ˈtrōz \

Definition of trough

1a : a long shallow often V-shaped receptacle for the drinking water or feed of domestic animals
b : any of various domestic or industrial containers
2a : a conduit, drain, or channel for water especially : a gutter along the eaves of a building
b : a long and narrow or shallow channel or depression (as between waves or hills) especially : a long but shallow depression in the bed of the sea — compare trench
3 : the minimum point of a complete cycle of a periodic function: such as
a : an elongated area of low barometric pressure
b : the low point in a business cycle

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Examples of trough in a Sentence

The economy is in a trough right now. all of the wiring for the converted residential loft is concealed in a vertical trough
Recent Examples on the Web Production from the Lower 48 reached 92.7 billion cubic feet on Wednesday, up 11% from a trough in October. Sergio Chapa,, "Natural Gas Bull Case Starts to Unravel on Demand-Killing Warmth," 19 Nov. 2020 The speed and strength of the upper trough will ultimately determine the track of Eta. Leigh Morgan, al, "Tropical Depression Eta track update: Florida, Gulf Coast warily watching potential path," 6 Nov. 2020 Some students are reluctant at first to plunge their arms into the watering trough to reach for a prize or feed hay to a cow from their hands. Tony Bravo,, "Black Lives Matter equestrian on mission to inspire inner-city youths," 30 Oct. 2020 The trough’s wind shear did catch up with Zeta at landfall, which helped reduce the amount of rainfall on the storm’s west side. Mark Schleifstein,, "Hurricane Zeta was an unexpected behemoth storm. How did it become so strong, so fast?," 29 Oct. 2020 Because of the unseasonably strong upper level trough bringing them the cold, a ridge of high pressure will remain along the East Coast, keeping our temperatures comfortably mild., "Temperatures will remain comfortably mild," 20 Oct. 2020 But that’s nothing like the extraordinary success stories coming out of the current transformative trough. David Meyer, Fortune, "Extraordinary stories of business success defy economic downturn," 23 Sep. 2020 The forward speed likely also affected the approaching low pressure trough, Brennan said. Mark Schleifstein,, "Hurricane Zeta was an unexpected behemoth storm. How did it become so strong, so fast?," 29 Oct. 2020 The Feds have already borrowed $2 trillion to address the Chinese coronavirus hysteria, but the museum community wants a few billion when the pig trough is replenished. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "COVID Cash Battles in Museum World," 17 Oct. 2020

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for trough

Middle English, from Old English trog; akin to Old High German trog trough, Old English trēow tree, wood — more at tree entry 1

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Time Traveler for trough

Time Traveler

The first known use of trough was before the 12th century

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Last Updated

30 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Trough.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for trough


How to pronounce trough (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of trough

: a long, shallow container from which animals (such as cows, pigs, horses, etc.) eat or drink
: a period in which there is little economic activity and prices are usually low
: a long, low area between waves or hills


\ ˈtrȯf How to pronounce trough (audio) \

Kids Definition of trough

1 : a long shallow open container especially for water or feed for livestock
2 : a channel for water : gutter
3 : a long channel or hollow


Medical Definition of trough

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