Webster's New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio.
- the highest level reached by a body of water in tidal flow, flood, etc.
- the mark left after high water has receded
- a culminating point; highest point
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
nounThe American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
- Abbr. HWM A mark indicating the highest level reached by a body of water.
- The highest point, as of achievement; the apex.
high-water mark - Phrases/Idioms
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The peak of something, especially an achievement. For example, This composition is the high-water mark of his entire output. This expression alludes to the highest mark left on shore by the tide. [Mid-1800s]