• IPA: /ˈpʌdəl/

puddle (plural puddles)

  1. A small pool of water, usually on a path or road. [from 14th c.]
  2. (now dialectal) Stagnant or polluted water. [from 16th c.]
    • 1596, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene, IV.5:
      And fast beside a little brooke did pas / Of muddie water, that like puddle stank […].
    • 1624, John Smith (explorer), Generall Historie, in Kupperman 1988, p. 90:
      searching their habitations for water, we could fill but three barricoes, and that such puddle, that never till then we ever knew the want of good water.
  3. A homogeneous mixture of clay, water, and sometimes grit, used to line a canal or pond to make it watertight. [from 18th c.]
  4. (rowing) The ripple left by the withdrawal of an oar from the water.
    • 1969, Charles Cuthbert Brown, Malay Sayings (page 88)
      I had only to see the 'puddle' to know that your paddle made it.
    • 2007, Rowing News (volume 14, number 5, page 36)
      As the blade exits the water the puddle is very tight and dark. It is also very quiet.
Translations Translations
  • Russian: обма́зка

puddle (puddles, present participle puddling; past and past participle puddled)

  1. To form a puddle.
  2. To play or splash in a puddle.
  3. (entomology) Of butterflies, to congregate on a puddle or moist substance to pick up nutrients.
  4. To process iron, gold, etc., by means of puddling.
  5. To line a canal with puddle (clay).
  6. To collect ideas, especially abstract concepts, into rough subtopics or categories, as in study, research or conversation.
  7. To make (clay, loam, etc.) dense or close, by working it when wet, so as to render impervious to water.
  8. To make foul or muddy; to pollute with dirt; to mix dirt with (water).
    • c. 1603–1604, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Othello, the Moore of Venice”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act III, scene iv]:
      Some unhatched practice […] / Hath puddled his clear spirit.

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