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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Waterspout \Wa"ter*spout`\, n. A remarkable meteorological phenomenon, of the nature of a tornado or whirlwind, usually observed over the sea, but sometimes over the land. [1913 Webster] Note: Tall columns, apparently of cloud, and reaching from the sea to the clouds, are seen moving along, often several at once, sometimes straight and vertical, at other times inclined and tortuous, but always in rapid rotation. At their bases, the sea is violently agitated and heaped up with a leaping or boiling motion, water, at least in some cases, being actually carried up in considerable quantity, and scattered round from a great height, as solid bodies are by tornadoes on land. --Sir J. Herschel. [1913 Webster]