Other forms: streams; streaming; streamed

That little rolling brook in your back yard is a stream. If it starts rising and threatens to flood, your father might let out a stream of expletives. A stream is a steady flow of something.

As a verb, stream means to flow out. If water streams from a faucet, it is pouring out. After a concert people stream out of a stadium and into the parking lot. On the web, you'll hear about something connected with music and video called streaming. This means that instead of having to download it to play, it is sent through your computer to listen to or watch, sort of like the way radio and TV work.

Definitions of stream
  1. noun
    a natural body of running water flowing on or under the earth
    synonyms: watercourse
    see moresee less
    show 10 types...
    hide 10 types...
    a stream or river connected to a larger one
    brook, creek
    a natural stream of water smaller than a river (and often a tributary of a river)
    a stream that forms the source of a river
    a large natural stream of water (larger than a creek)
    rill, rivulet, run, runnel, streamlet
    a small stream
    tidal river, tidal stream, tidewater river, tidewater stream
    a stream in which the effects of the tide extend far upstream
    a branch of a river made by water flowing from the main stream only when the water level is high
    a small brook
    a branch of a river that flows away from the main stream and does not rejoin it
    affluent, confluent, feeder, tributary
    a branch that flows into the main stream
    type of:
    body of water, water
    the part of the earth's surface covered with water (such as a river or lake or ocean)
  2. noun
    something that resembles a flowing stream in moving continuously
    “a stream of people emptied from the terminal”
    synonyms: flow
    see moresee less
    type of:
    a state of change
  3. noun
    dominant course (suggestive of running water) of successive events or ideas
    “two streams of development run through American history”
    stream of consciousness”
    synonyms: current, flow
    see moresee less
    type of:
    course, line, trajectory
    a connected series of events or actions or developments
  4. noun
    a steady flow of a fluid (usually from natural causes)
    “he felt a stream of air”
    “the hose ejected a stream of water”
    synonyms: current
    see moresee less
    show 15 types...
    hide 15 types...
    tidal current, tidal flow
    the water current caused by the tides
    rip current, riptide
    a strong surface current flowing outwards from a shore
    undercurrent, undertide
    a current below the surface of a fluid
    torrent, violent stream
    a violently fast stream of water (or other liquid)
    eddy, twist
    a miniature whirlpool or whirlwind resulting when the current of a fluid doubles back on itself
    maelstrom, vortex, whirlpool
    a powerful circular current of water (usually the result of conflicting tides)
    ocean current
    the steady flow of surface ocean water in a prevailing direction
    aegir, bore, eager, eagre, tidal bore
    a high wave (often dangerous) caused by tidal flow (as by colliding tidal currents or in a narrow estuary)
    sea purse, sea puss, sea-poose, sea-purse, sea-puss, undertow
    the seaward undercurrent created after waves have broken on the shore
    (Greek mythology) a ship-devouring whirlpool lying on the other side of a narrow strait from Scylla
    El Nino
    (oceanography) a warm ocean current that flows along the equator from the date line and south off the coast of Ecuador at Christmas time
    equatorial current
    any of the ocean currents that flow westward at the equator
    Gulf stream
    a warm ocean current that flows from the Gulf of Mexico northward through the Atlantic Ocean
    Japan current, Kuroshio, Kuroshio current
    a warm ocean current that flows northeastwardly off the coast of Japan into the northern Pacific ocean
    Humboldt current, Peruvian current
    a cold ocean current that flows north along the Pacific Coast of South America before turning west
    type of:
    flow, flowing
    the motion characteristic of fluids (liquids or gases)
  5. noun
    the act of flowing or streaming; continuous progression
    synonyms: flow
    see moresee less
    release, spill, spillage
    the act of allowing a fluid to escape
    flood, outpouring, overflow
    a large flow
    flow under pressure
    type of:
    motion, move, movement
    the act of changing location from one place to another
  6. verb
    flow freely and abundantly
    “Tears streamed down her face”
    synonyms: well out
    see moresee less
    stream in jets, of liquids
    centrifugate, centrifuge
    rotate at very high speed in order to separate the liquids from the solids
    type of:
    course, feed, flow, run
    move along, of liquids
  7. verb
    to extend, wave or float outward, as if in the wind
    “their manes streamed like stiff black pennants in the wind”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    be adrift, blow, drift, float
    be in motion due to some air or water current
  8. verb
    exude profusely
    “She was streaming with sweat”
    “His nose streamed blood”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    exudate, exude, ooze, ooze out, transude
    release (a liquid) in drops or small quantities
  9. verb
    move in large numbers
    synonyms: pour, pullulate, swarm, teem
    see moresee less
    pour out, spill out, spill over
    be disgorged
    type of:
    crowd, crowd together
    to gather together in large numbers
  10. verb
    rain heavily
    synonyms: pelt, pour, rain buckets, rain cats and dogs
    see moresee less
    come down as if in sheets
    sluice, sluice down
    pour as if from a sluice
    type of:
    rain, rain down
    precipitate as rain




Cite this entry
  • MLA
  • APA
  • Chicago

Copy citation
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘stream'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
Word Family

Look up stream for the last time

Close your vocabulary gaps with personalized learning that focuses on teaching the words you need to know.

VocabTrainer -'s Vocabulary Trainer