from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Water held or pushed back by or as if by a dam or current.
- n. A body of water thus formed.
- n. A place or situation regarded as isolated, stagnant, or backward: "The running of family fortunes has always been a backwater—albeit a lucrative one—of the investment management business” ( Business Week).
- n. A rowing or paddling stroke in which the oar or paddle is pushed forward, used to check a boat's forward motion or move it backward.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The water held back by a dam or other obstruction
- n. A remote place; somewhere that remains unaffected by new events, progresses, ideas, etc.
- n. A rowing stroke in which the oar is pushed forward to stop the boat; see back water
- v. To row or paddle a backwater stroke.
- v. To vacillate on a long-held position.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Water turned back in its course by an obstruction, an opposing current, or the flow of the tide, as in a sewer or river channel, or across a river bar.
- n. An accumulation of water overflowing the low lands, caused by an obstruction.
- n. Water thrown back by the turning of a waterwheel, or by the paddle wheels of a steamer.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. 1. Water flowing in from behind.
- n. Water thrown back by the turning of a water-wheel or the paddles of steamboats, etc.
- n. Water held or forced back, as in a mill-race or in a tributary stream, in consequence of some obstruction, as a dam or flood.
- n. An artificial accumulation of water obtained at high tide and reserved in reservoirs, to be discharged at low tide for clearing off deposits in channel-beds and tideways.
- n. A creek or arm of the sea which runs parallel to the coast, having only a narrow slip of land between it and the sea, and communicating with the latter by barred entrances.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a body of water that was created by a flood or tide or by being held or forced back by a dam
- n. a place or condition in which no development or progress is occurring
Sorry, no etymologies found.