from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A barrier that protects a harbor or shore from the full impact of waves.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Any structure or contrivance, as a mole, mound, wall, or sunken hulk, serving to break the force of waves and protect a harbor or anything exposed to the force of the waves.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun Any structure or contrivance, as a mole, or a wall at the mouth of a harbor, to break the force of waves, and afford protection from their violence.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun a construction in or around a harbour designed to break the force of the sea and to provide shelter for vessels lying inside
  • noun nautical a low bulkhead across the forecastle deck of a ship which diverts water breaking over the bows into the scuppers
  • noun On beaches: a wooden or concrete barrier, usually perpendicular to the shore, intended to prevent the movement of sand along a coast.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a protective structure of stone or concrete; extends from shore into the water to prevent a beach from washing away
  • verb show the fins above the water while swimming


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • "If you look out towards what you call the breakwater, you see all the edges right now with the rocks.

    The Southern Gazette: News

  • What we're calling the breakwater is obviously working.

    Storm Rising

  • Behind the south-facing second-story window with the optimal view of both the harbor and the breakwater is the main council chamber of the Brotherhood.

    The Death of Chaos

  • What we're calling the breakwater is obviously working.

    Storm Rising

  • We first visited the village of Sand Beach, and returned at nightfall to the breakwater, which is five miles distant from the former; here the yacht was cabled to the dock.

    By Water to the Columbian Exposition

  • The bay is admirably sheltered by the land on three sides, while on the North it is sheltered by a large breakwater, which is protected and leaves passage for vessels.

    The Delta of the Triple Elevens The History of Battery D, 311th Field Artillery US Army, American Expeditionary Forces

  • The breakwater, which is a good half mile in length, is a favorite promenade for the citizens of Colombo.

    Nellie Bly's Book: Around the World in Seventy-Two Days

  • On the other side of the breakwater is a choppy small bay where the more experienced snorkelers go out.

  • If it had not been for them, in fact, there probably would never have been a "breakwater" at all.

    Storm Rising

  • The end result of that was a temporary "breakwater" running from the northernmost tip of Iftel to the southernmost end of Karse, a breakwater that disrupted the mage-storms as they moved across the face of the land, broke them up and dissipated their energies harmlessly.

    Storm Rising


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