• WordNet 3.6
    • n maelstrom a powerful circular current of water (usually the result of conflicting tides)
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Maelstrom A celebrated whirlpool on the coast of Norway.
    • Maelstrom An uncontrollable agitated or confusedly disordered state or situation; as, a maelstrom of vice.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n maelstrom A celebrated whirlpool or violent current in the Arctic ocean, near the western coast of Norway, between the islands Moskenäsö and Mosken, formerly supposed to suck in and destroy everything that approached it at any time, but now known not to be dangerous except under certain conditions.
    • n maelstrom Hence Any resistless movement; any influence or passion which makes victims of all who come within its power: as, the maelstrom of fashion or of speculation; the maelstrom of dissipation or of crime.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Maelstrom māl′strom a celebrated whirlpool off the coast of Norway: any resistless overpowering influence for destruction.
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Norw., a whirlpool
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Norw., 'grinding stream.'


In literature:

The white maelstrom of the lower rapids seized upon it.
"The Valley of Silent Men" by James Oliver Curwood
Down, down, down; down with a speed so wild Ken grew faint; down through the core of a maelstrom of snow till she crashed.
"Under Arctic Ice" by H.G. Winter
Davies rose spontaneously from his seat and added his puny voice to the maelstrom of noise.
"Interference and Other Football Stories" by Harold M. Sherman
A rush of escaping air whirled upward the black-winged monsters in an inverted maelstrom of shrieking winds.
"The Finding of Haldgren" by Charles Willard Diffin
From the maelstrom she was hoisted bodily into a car.
"The Paliser case" by Edgar Saltus
The oily calm below the first rapid dropped into another maelstrom of angry waters.
"The Cariboo Trail" by Agnes C. Laut
If the voyageurs had not been hemmed in by a boiling maelstrom on both sides, they would have deserted on the spot.
"Pioneers of the Pacific Coast" by Agnes C. Laut
Exhausted by his wild flight, surrounded by this maelstrom of sound, he sank to the floor and let his laboring lungs have their way.
"Two Thousand Miles Below" by Charles Willard Diffin
How in the world anything could live in such a maelstrom of explosive it is difficult to conceive.
"How I Filmed the War" by Lieut. Geoffrey H. Malins
What place were they to occupy in this maelstrom?
"The Preacher of Cedar Mountain" by Ernest Thompson Seton
A case that has been placid and smooth as a mill pond will suddenly develop the characteristics of a maelstrom!
"The Monk of Hambleton" by Armstrong Livingston
He was swept under, and the water around him became a maelstrom.
"Astounding Stories, April, 1931" by Various
From the midst of this musical Maelstrom I send you a voice, which, if heard instead of read, would be lamentable enough.
"Records of Later Life" by Frances Ann Kemble
And forthwith the maelstrom began.
"The Missourian" by Eugene P. (Eugene Percy) Lyle
Countless stories are afloat concerning this weird maelstrom of mud and bubbling water.
"Legends & Romances of Brittany" by Lewis Spence
All at once, just on the outside of the miniature maelstrom, appeared a small round, black object.
"The Go Ahead Boys and the Treasure Cave" by Ross Kay
I pretended to be absorbed in a local paper, but in reality my thoughts were a maelstrom.
"The House by the Lock" by C. N. Williamson
Remember, that quietude of manner constitutes a woman's greatest charm; and, unfortunately, you seem almost a mimic maelstrom.
"Vashti" by Augusta J. Evans Wilson
I am saturated with the money-getting mania; I am in the maelstrom and I couldn't get out if I tried.
"My Brave and Gallant Gentleman" by Robert Watson
In order to find out how they got a living, I followed some of these men through the maelstrom of city life.
"McClure's Magazine, Vol. XXXI, No. 4, August 1908" by Various

In poetry:

The city: a maelstrom
of frenzied crowds.
Roaming hordes
beneath gray clouds.
"The City" by Eberhard Arnold
Profounds of fire whose maelstroms froth
To gathered armies of offense;
Cohorts unweariable, immense,
And bulks wherewith the Dark is wroth;
"The Testimony of the Suns" by George Sterling
For it is a beauteous thing
That ships should sail the sea.
Splendid is their plunge and swing
Into waves that foam and fling
Maelstroms at their bows to bring
Them down to destiny.
"Navis Ignota" by Cale Young Rice
On the swift maelstrom of the eddying world
We hurl our woes, and think they are no more.
But round and round by dizzy billows whirled,
They reach out sinewy arms and swim to shore.
"Spectres" by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

In news:

He survived the maelstrom - but now he has his own billion-dollar problems to worry about.
The maelstrom surrounding the former Sullivan & Cromwell associate, Aaron Charney, is finally over.
In judicial maelstrom , he wouldn't quit the helm.
Quiet judge persists in Schiavo maelstrom .
Welcome to The Maelstrom .
Armstrong unfazed by doping maelstrom.
Every team faced with a similar maelstrom will say that.
Downtown, our Somali cameraman happens across a spontaneous demonstration against the Ethiopian occupiers, blamed by residents for the maelstrom that's engulfed their city.
I couldn't imagine braving that maelstrom every week, as so many do.
Forty-four years later it's still funny, but also a matter of fact — and the center of a cultural maelstrom.
Slate Belt loan agency files for bankruptcy amid legal maelstrom.
Descent into the Maelstrom.
Walking through the din of a coastal maelstrom.
For some content creators, the exploding proliferation of recording formats and devices is a chaotic maelstrom.
The Sandusky affair is but a maelstrom on an ocean of money in which the institution enjoys swimming.

In science:

Supernova remnants, expanding HII regions, rotational shear, and spiral arm shocks contribute to the interstellar gaseous maelstrom within galaxies.
Turbulence in the Star-forming Interstellar Medium: Steps toward Constraining Theories with Observations
In particular, the M81 group is dominated by a large galaxy and at least three dwarfs caught up in a maelstrom of HI gas. To our view, this does not look so different from the Galaxy system.
Conference Summary: Magellanic System - Stars, Gas and Galaxies
There are many mysteries in our field, ranging from the origin of the SU (2) × U (1) breakdown, to the reason for families and the peculiar spectrum of quark and leptons. 61 In Vancouver, these mysteries, however, took a back seat to what I called the neutrino maelstr¨om.
Summary and Outlook
There are actually two different aspects of the neutrino maelstr¨om.
Summary and Outlook