Pronunciation Noun

dyke (plural dykes) (British spelling)

  1. (historical) A long, narrow hollow dug from the ground to serve as a boundary marker.
  2. A long, narrow hollow dug from the ground to conduct water.
  3. (dialect) Any navigable watercourse.
  4. (dialect) Any watercourse.
  5. (dialect) Any small body of water.
  6. (obsolete) Any hollow dug into the ground.
  7. (now, chiefly, Australia, slang) A place to urinate and defecate: an outhouse or lavatory.
    • 1977, Ian Slack-Smith, "The Passing of the Twin Seater" in The Cubbaroo Tales:
      In Cubbaroo's dim distant past
      They built a double dyke.
      Back to back in the yard it stood
      An architectural dream in wood.
  8. An embankment formed by the creation of a ditch.
  9. (obsolete) A city wall.
  10. (now, chiefly, Scotland) A low embankment or stone wall serving as an enclosure and boundary marker.
  11. (dialect) Any fence or hedge.
  12. An earthwork raised to prevent inundation of low land by the sea or flooding rivers.
    • 1891, Susan Hale, The Story of Nations: Mexico, p. 100:
      The king of Texcuco advised the building of a great dike, so thick and strong as to keep out the water.
  13. (figuratively) Any impediment, barrier, or difficulty.
  14. A beaver's dam.
  15. (dialect) A jetty; a pier.
  16. A raised causeway.
  17. (dialect, mining) A fissure in a rock stratum filled with intrusive rock; a fault.
  18. (geology) A body of rock (usually igneous) originally filling a fissure but now often rising above the older stratum as it is eroded away.
Synonyms Related terms Translations
  • French: fossé
  • German: Graben
  • Italian: fosso
  • Portuguese: trincheira
  • Russian: сто́чная кана́ва
Translations Translations
  • German: Gesteinsgang
  • Italian: dicco
  • Spanish: dique

dyke (dykes, present participle dyking; past and past participle dyked)

  1. (transitive or intransitive) To dig, particularly to create a ditch.
  2. (transitive) To surround with a ditch, to entrench.
  3. (transitive, Scotland) To surround with a low dirt or stone wall.
  4. (transitive or intransitive) To raise a protective earthwork against a sea or river.
  5. (transitive) To scour a watercourse.
  6. (transitive) To steep [fibers] within a watercourse.

dyke (plural dykes)

  1. (slang, usually pejorative) A lesbian, particularly one with masculine or butch traits or behavior.
Synonyms Related terms Translations
  • German: Kampflesbe
  • Portuguese: sapatão
  • Russian: кобёл

Proper noun
  1. A village in Lincolnshire, England.
  2. Surname

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