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 Riparian zone on Wikipedia


Borrowed from Latin rīpārius (relating to a riverbank) +‎ -an.


  • (UK) IPA(key): /ɹʌɪˈpɛːɹɪən/, /ɹɪˈpɛːɹɪən/
  • (file)
A riparian strip on a tributary to Lake Erie


riparian (comparative more riparian, superlative most riparian)

  1. Of or relating to the bank of a river or stream.
    • 1966, Thomas Pynchon, chapter 5, in The Crying of Lot 49, New York: Bantam Books, published 1976, →ISBN, page 112:
      By the time she'd pulled into Bortz's subdivision, a riparian settlement in the style of Fangoso Lagoons, she was only shaking and a little nauseous in the stomach.
    • 2011 May 28, Jim Perrin, The Guardian:
      A kingfisher, an airborne jewel, whirrs past, stickleback in its beak, and disappears into a thicket of riparian willow.
    • 2013 January, Nancy Langston, “The Fraught History of a Watery World”, in American Scientist[1], volume 101, number 1, archived from the original on 22 January 2013, page 59:
      European adventurers found themselves within a watery world, a tapestry of streams, channels, wetlands, lakes and lush riparian meadows enriched by floodwaters from the Mississippi River.
    • 2021 April 1, Lara Fowler, “No April Fool’s joke for Florida: Water rights case is dismissed”, in SCOTUSblog:
      Relying on the fact that both states are riparian states, the court noted that both have “an equal right to make a reasonable use” of the water in the shared basin and that Florida bore the “heavy burden” of proving its case by clear and convincing evidence.

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riparian (plural riparians)

  1. (chiefly law) A person or other entity that lives or owns property along the shore of a river.