crevasse

If you're heading to the North Pole by sled, watch out you don't fall into a crevasse — a deep fissure or crack in the snow or ice. Similar to the term "crevice," though "crevice" usually refers to a fissure in a rock face. Neither one is a nice place to get stuck.

The word crevasse, as its spelling suggests, comes from an old French word, the verb crevare, meaning "to burst or break," and indicating how a crevasse was formed in the first place. The reason for the difference in the two terms, crevasse and crevice, was originally to indicate a difference in size: in general a crevasse is much larger than a crevice, which can often be extremely small.

Definitions of crevasse
1

n a deep fissure

Type of:
cleft, crack, crevice, fissure, scissure
a long narrow opening

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.