cesspool

noun
cess·​pool | \ ˈses-ˌpül How to pronounce cesspool (audio) \

Definition of cesspool

1 : an underground reservoir for liquid waste (such as household sewage)
2 : a filthy, evil, or corrupt place or state a cesspool of corruption

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for cesspool

Synonyms

Augean stable, Gomorrah, sink

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of cesspool in a Sentence

The region had become a cesspool of pollution. over the decades the once-respectable neighborhood had become an urban cesspool

Recent Examples on the Web

For three frenzied days and nights, some of the best improvisers known to mankind descend upon the city and turn it into a riotous cesspool of comedic talent. Kasia Pilat, New York Times, "6 Comedy Shows to Catch in N.Y.C. This Weekend," 28 June 2018 In the mid-to-late 1970s, New York was a bit of a cesspool: Crime was out of control, repeated requests for federal aid were denied, and the city was on the edge of bankruptcy. Vogue, "The 55 Best Romantic Comedies of All Time," 1 Feb. 2019 And, yeah, the Earl Thomas situation still has the potential to erupt into a cesspool of recrimination despite the ceasefire of hostilities once the whistle blows. Larry Stone, The Seattle Times, "In win over Cowboys, Seahawks show they can thrive amid the Earl Thomas chaos," 24 Sep. 2018 What used to be a home for funny, irreverent comedy and harmless gags gradually transformed into an unaccountable cesspool of toxic actors and bad-faith harassers. Bijan Stephen, The Verge, "Sweden’s official Twitter account will no longer be run by random Swedes," 5 Sep. 2018 And, yes, that might mean some awful people create filter bubbles of nonsense and hatred, but average people could avoid those cesspools while at the same time those tasked with monitoring those kinds of idiots and their behavior could still do so. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Why Facebook banned Alex Jones — and Twitter didn’t," 11 Aug. 2018 Many homes use rainwater-catch tanks and cesspools or septic tanks. Caleb Jones, Fox News, "Living on Hawaii volcano offers affordable paradise, risks," 8 May 2018 From that cesspool of decadence and depravity at Churchill Downs the genre of Gonzo journalism was born and the fastest two minutes in sports started a friendship that lasted a lifetime between the writer and the artist. The Courier-Journal, "Ralph Steadman Recalls 1970 Derby Adventure," 3 May 2018 But the 50-square-mile lake, considered Florida’s fourth-largest, devolved from a fishing paradise to a toxic cesspool during a half-century of environmental abuse beginning in the 1940s with chemical runoff from vegetable farms. Stephen Hudak, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Winter Garden buys lakefront properties, envisions 'nicest park on Lake Apopka'," 8 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of cesspool

1782, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cesspool

perhaps by folk etymology from Middle English suspiral vent, tap on a main pipe, settling pool, from Anglo-French suspirale vent, from suspirer to sigh, exhale, from Latin suspirare, literally, to draw a long breath — more at suspire

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about cesspool

Dictionary Entries near cesspool

cessionary

cessionee

cesspit

cesspool

cest

cesta

Cestida

Statistics for cesspool

Last Updated

22 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cesspool

The first known use of cesspool was in 1782

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for cesspool

cesspool

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cesspool

: an underground hole or container for holding liquid waste (such as sewage) from a building
: a place or situation that is very dirty, evil, or corrupt

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on cesspool

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cesspool

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cesspool

Spanish Central: Translation of cesspool

Nglish: Translation of cesspool for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about cesspool

Comments on cesspool

What made you want to look up cesspool? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to reflect, repel, echo, or resound

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt-painting-a-young-scholar-and-his-tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!