A rill is a narrow and shallow incision into soil resulting from erosion by overland flow that has been focused into a thin thread by soil surface roughness. Rilling, the process of rill formation, is common on agricultural land and unvegetated ground.

Some rills will continue to grow, as they are widened and/or deepened by the runoff which flows through them. Other rills may decline in importance as sediment is deposited within them. Eventually, a hydrologically efficient rill network will be formed. The development of such a network is an example of self-organisation.

In a few cases, rills may continue to grow and become gullies or rivulets then streams and so on to form a river.

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  • Rill — (r[i^]l), n. [Cf. LG. rille a small channel or brook, a furrow, a chamfer, OE. rigol a small brook, F. rigole a trench or furrow for water, W. rhill a row, rhigol a little ditch. [root]11.] 1. A very small brook; a streamlet. [1913 Webster] 2.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Rill — Rill, v. i. To run a small stream. [R.] Prior. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • rill — [ril] n. [< Du ril or LowG rille < * ridula, dim. of Gmc base seen in OE rith, small stream] a little brook; rivulet vi. to flow in or like a rill …   English World dictionary

  • rill|et — «RIHL iht», noun. a little rill …   Useful english dictionary

  • rill — small brook, rivulet, 1530s, from Du. ril, Low Ger. rille groove, furrow, running stream, probably from P.Gmc. *riðele (Cf. O.E. rið, riþe brook, stream, which survives only in obscure English dialects), a diminutive form from PIE root *reie to… …   Etymology dictionary

  • rill — ► NOUN ▪ a small stream. ORIGIN probably Low German …   English terms dictionary

  • Rill — 51.5999888888896.5399083333333 Koordinaten: 51° 36′ N, 6° 32′ O Die Siedlung Rill gehört zum Ortsteil Menzelen der Gemeinde Alpen im Kreis Wesel am unteren linken Niederrhein …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • rill — foot·rill; rill·et; rill; tou·rill; …   English syllables

  • rill — I. noun Etymology: Dutch ril or Low German rille; akin to Old English rīth rivulet Date: 1538 a very small brook II. intransitive verb Date: 1610 to flow like a rill III. noun or rille …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Rill — Un rill est une incision étroite et superficielle du sol qui est provoquée par l érosion consécutive au ruissellement concentrée sur une petite portion de terrain. Ce phénomène est commun sur les terrains cultivées ou sans végétation. Après leur… …   Wikipédia en Français

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