\ˈbyüt \

Definition of butte 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: an isolated hill or mountain with steep or precipitous sides usually having a smaller summit area than a mesa


geographical name
\ˈbyüt \

Definition of Butte (Entry 2 of 2)

city in southwestern Montana on a plateau in the Rockies population 32,996

Examples of butte in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Over the last few days, Reese Witherspoon has been posting gorgeous Instagrams of red-rock buttes and bright blue skies while on a girls trip in Sedona, Arizona. Vogue, "Reese Witherspoon Chose This Arizona Town for an Outdoorsy Girls Trip," 11 Oct. 2018 Nebraska’s topography isn’t all flat like a pancake but surprisingly diverse, from bluffs and buttes jutting out of the Plains to rolling hills. Kathryn Prociv, Washington Post, "Prongs of lightning sizzle in Nebraska’s summer sky," 15 June 2018 On the second half of the hike, the pastures widen to expose lovely views of mountaintops above and towns, buttes and hills far below. Roger Naylor, azcentral, "10 best hikes in Arizona show off state's diverse scenery," 13 July 2018 Explore the 1,100 piney acres of Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area and Nature Center, spread across a rocky escarpment within a region of rising canyons and forested buttes. Laura Kiniry, Smithsonian, "The 20 Best Small Towns To Visit in 2018," 5 June 2018 The couple pursued the property with the idea of preserving the expanse of native Palouse prairie that wraps around three sides of the butte and abuts Washington State Parks land. Eric Barker, The Seattle Times, "Couples win bid for chunk of the Palouse," 10 June 2018 In northwestern New Mexico, the milder weather conditions Wednesday should be useful for firefighters who were hindered by strong winds a day earlier but managed to keep wildfires largely in check on a mountain and a butte near Grants. Washington Post, "Winds ease but deadly wildfires endure in Southwest US," 18 Apr. 2018 Low-angle autumn light glanced off buttes alongside Route 2. Porter Fox, Outside Online, "Exploring America's Forgotten Border," 1 June 2018 Sedona, gateway to Arizona’s red rock country 90 minutes drive north of Phoenix, attracts hikers eager to scale its striated buttes and New Age pilgrims seeking the fabled vortexes — or energy centers — said to be squired in the rocks. Elaine Glusac, New York Times, "Sedona for Serenity, Spas and Now Syrahs," 18 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'butte.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of butte


1805, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for butte


French, knoll, from Middle French bute

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Dictionary Entries near butte

butt chain

butt chisel

butt cut



butt end


Statistics for butte

Last Updated

15 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for butte

The first known use of butte was in 1805

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More Definitions for butte



English Language Learners Definition of butte

: a type of hill with a flat top and steep sides that is found in the southwestern U.S.


\ˈbyüt \

Kids Definition of butte

: an isolated hill with steep sides

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