Craters on the moon.
An example of a crater is a hole on the moon's surface.
- in ancient Greece or Rome, a kind of large bowl or jar shaped like an amphora
- a bowl-shaped cavity, as at the mouth of a volcano or geyser
- a pit resembling this, specif. one caused by a bomb or by the impact of a meteorite, as on the moon
Origin of craterL, bowl, vessel for liquids[C-]Astron. a S constellation between Hydra and Corvus
Origin of craterL, mixing bowl (for wine), mouth of a volcano from Classical Greek krat?r from kerannynai, to mix: see idiosyncrasy
- to form craters
- Slang to fail completely
- A bowl-shaped depression created by the activity of a volcano or geyser.
- a. A bowl-shaped depression in a surface made by an explosion or the impact of a body, such as a meteoroid.b. A pit; a hollow.
- Variant of krater
verbcra·tered, cra·ter·ing, cra·ters
- To form a crater or craters.
- Slang a. To fall and crash violently from a great height.b. To fail utterly: “talked about how tough times were in Texas since the oil business cratered” ( Stephen Coonts )
Origin of craterLatin crātēr from Greek krātēr mixing vessel ; see kerə- in Indo-European roots.
top: Ol Doinyo Lengai, an active volcano in northern Tanzania (background) with a crater (foreground) formed by the collapse of a cone on its flank
bottom: Meteor Crater, near Winslow, Arizona
Origin of CraterLatin crātēr mixing bowl, crater ; see crater .
- (astronomy) A hemispherical pit created by the impact of a meteorite or other object.
- (geology) The basinlike opening or mouth of a volcano, through which the chief eruption comes; similarly, the mouth of a geyser, about which a cone of silica is often built up.
- (informal) The pit left by the explosion of a mine or bomb.
- (informal) Any large, roughly circular depression or hole.
(third-person singular simple present craters, present participle cratering, simple past and past participle cratered)
- To collapse catastrophically; implode; hollow out; to become devastated or completely destroyed.
- The economy is about to crater. -- Attributed by David Letterman to Sen. John McCain. NYTimes blog
- (snowboarding) To crash or fall.
- He cratered into that snow bank about five seconds after his first lesson.
First coined 1613, from Latin crater (“basin”), from Ancient Greek κρατήρ (kratēr, “mixingbowl, wassail-bowl”), from κράμα (krama, “mixture”), from κεράννυμι (kerannumi, “to mix, to mingle”).
- (Ireland, informal, UK, dialect) A term of endearment, a dote, a wretched thing.
- 1843 - I then had the two best tarriers beneath the canopy; this poor crater is their daughter," and he patted the dog's head affectionately.William Hamilton Maxwell, Wild Sports of the West: With Legendary Tales, and Local Sketches , Publisher R. Bentley, page 77,
- 1859 - She is a charming crater; I would venture to say that, if I was not her father.The British Drama: A Collection of the Most Esteemed Tragedies, Comedies ...
- 1872 Thomas Hardy "Under the Greenwood Tree"
- "Then why not stop for fellow-craters -- going to thy own father's house too, as we be, and knowen us so well?"
This term is still commonly used in speech but rarely appears in modern writing.See also: craterin
Possibly a diminutive of cratur (dialect form of creature).