Definition of undertow
1 : the current beneath the surface that sets seaward or along the beach when waves are breaking upon the shore
2 : an underlying current, force, or tendency that is in opposition to what is apparent
Examples of undertow in a Sentence
Don't get caught in the undertow.
Recent Examples of undertow from the Web
The rocks near the waterfall can be slippery, and the undertow inside the pool below is deceptively strong.
If only all that solid stuff had a stronger gravity to it, an undertow that drew us from our assessing distance and into the picture.
Lawmakers who usually have competitive races often get sucked away by the undertow.
But no matter how many drug users start on the path to healing, others remain caught in the undertow of addiction.
But rising wages should counter the economic undertow, especially if the gains remain broad-based.
Tech shares were caught in the undertow as the market receded to slightly less frothy valuations.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'undertow'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use of undertow
UNDERTOW Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of undertow for English Language Learners
: a current in the sea or ocean that is below the surface and that moves away from the shore
UNDERTOW Defined for Kids
Definition of undertow for Students
: a current beneath the surface of the water that moves away from or along the shore while the surface water above it moves toward the shore
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up undertow? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).