A tide that occurs when the difference between high and low tide is least. Neap tide comes twice a month, in the first and third quarters of the moon.
A tide in which the difference between high and low tide is the least. Neap tides occur twice a month when the Sun and Moon are at right angles to the Earth. When this is the case, their total gravitational pull on the Earth's water is weakened because it comes from two different directions.
Origin of neap-tide
- Middle English neep from Old English nēp(flōd) neap (tide)
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition