vortex

noun
vor·​tex | \ ˈvȯr-ˌteks How to pronounce vortex (audio) \
plural vortices\ ˈvȯr-​tə-​ˌsēz How to pronounce vortices (audio) \ also vortexes\ ˈvȯr-​ˌtek-​səz How to pronounce vortexes (audio) \

Definition of vortex

1 : something that resembles a whirlpool the hellish vortex of battleTime
2a : a mass of fluid (such as a liquid) with a whirling or circular motion that tends to form a cavity or vacuum in the center of the circle and to draw toward this cavity or vacuum bodies subject to its action especially : whirlpool, eddy
b : a region within a body of fluid in which the fluid elements have an angular velocity

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Synonyms for vortex

Synonyms

gulf, maelstrom, whirlpool

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Examples of vortex in a Sentence

a boat sucked down into the vortex

Recent Examples on the Web

The world, by contrast, has many shapes, vectors, and vortices. Maria Shine Stewart, cleveland.com, "Back to school in our towns, even better than ever: Sun Messages," 23 Aug. 2019 Gallo hit this into a black hole conveniently located in the rightfield corner of Globe Life Ball Park—a light-consuming vortex, a Bermuda Triangle of dingers. Jon Tayler, SI.com, "Ranking the 10 Best Home Runs of 2019 So Far," 4 July 2019 The patch is formed by the convergence of several ocean currents, which creates a vortex that traps floating debris, including plastics. Matthew Pera, The Mercury News, "Bay Area group leads cleanup of 40 tons of plastic from ‘Great Pacific Garbage Patch’," 3 July 2019 Mesquite Groves Aquatic Center: Two water slides, lazy river, toddler water slides, water vortex, shade areas. Arizona Republic, azcentral, "Summer in Arizona: Locals share 100 fun ways to survive the 100-degree heat in Phoenix," 1 July 2019 According to a news release from Apple Holler, January's polar vortex wiped out any chance of a peach harvest. Amy Schwabe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Crazy weather means there are no peaches to pick at Apple Holler, but apples could be ready as early as next week," 29 July 2019 Drama in the online beauty community has felt like a never-ending vortex recently, with controversial makeup launches and feuds that involve 18-minute-long apology videos, tears, and inevitable comebacks. Thatiana Diaz, refinery29.com, "How Influencer Drama Inspired Patrick Starrr's Latest Project," 30 June 2019 The polar vortex caused leaves to turn brown all over. Suzanne Baker, Naperville Sun, "Polar vortex blamed for browning boxwoods and other trees, shrubs," 9 June 2019 The rockets and satellites launched during the Cold War helped provide a major breakthrough in weather prediction: the first images sent from the edge of space showed Earth wrapped in bands and whirls and vortices that stretched thousands of miles. Hannah Fry, The New Yorker, "Why Weather Forecasting Keeps Getting Better," 24 June 2019

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

1652, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for vortex

New Latin vortic-, vortex, from Latin vertex, vortex whirlpool — more at vertex

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Statistics for vortex

Last Updated

13 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for vortex

The first known use of vortex was in 1652

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More Definitions for vortex

vortex

noun

English Language Learners Definition of vortex

technical : a mass of spinning air, liquid, etc., that pulls things into its center
vor·​tex | \ ˈvȯ(ə)r-ˌteks How to pronounce vortex (audio) \

Medical Definition of vortex

: to mix (as the contents of a test tube) by means of a rapid whirling or circular motion vortex air into a solution

Other Words from vortex

vortexing noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on vortex

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with vortex

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for vortex

Spanish Central: Translation of vortex

Nglish: Translation of vortex for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vortex for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about vortex

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