A mass of fluid, especially of a liquid, having a whirling or circular motion tending to form a cavity or vacuum in the center of the circle, and to draw in towards the center bodies subject to its action; the form assumed by a fluid in such motion; a whirlpool; an eddy.
A supposed collection of particles of very subtile matter, endowed with a rapid rotary motion around an axis which was also the axis of a sun or a planet. Descartes attempted to account for the formation of the universe, and the movements of the bodies composing it, by a theory of vortices.
An area of revolving compressed air. Turbulent air is that way built up of a combination of small vortices. The most obvious examples are the vortices that are visible coming off the sides of a rear wing in humid conditions. These vortices are always there but only visible in certain conditions.