: a very steep, vertical, or overhanging face of rock, earth, or ice : precipice
cliffy adjective

Examples of cliff in a Sentence

Standing at the edge of the cliff, we watched the waves crash on the shore far below. rock climbers scaling steep cliffs
Recent Examples on the Web In other photos, Bailey was seen on a jet-ski and posed on a grassy cliff overlooking the ocean. Escher Walcott, Peoplemag, 9 Apr. 2024 Related Stories The footage, screened at international television confab MIPTV, showed extraordinary sights, including a bear making a treacherous half-mile descent down a crumbling cliff face, with two cubs clinging to her for life, images captured by a drone camera. Liza Foreman, The Hollywood Reporter, 9 Apr. 2024 Against a spectacular background of limestone cliffs they are put through their paces from hill runs to higher-grade rock climbs. John Hopewell, Variety, 5 Apr. 2024 Of the 10 dead, at least four were killed inside Taroko National Park, a Hualien county tourist attraction famous for canyons and cliffs about 90 miles from Taipei. Chris Pandolfo, Fox News, 4 Apr. 2024 Big Sur is famous for its dramatic cliffs, towering redwoods and breathtaking ocean views, but its roads have taken a beating by current and past rainy seasons that were enough to pull the state out of its historic drought but also caused scores of road collapses, mud flows and rockslides. Kristin J. Bender, The Mercury News, 4 Apr. 2024 Nestled between two cliffs, the beach is only accessible by descending a steep flight of stairs that have been carved into the cliffside. Kathleen Wong, USA TODAY, 3 Apr. 2024 Visitors can stop at the parking lot of the Precipice Trail during the summer to participate in the Peregrine Watch for an opportunity to use scopes to view peregrine and their nests on the cliff. Jacqueline Dole, Travel + Leisure, 29 Mar. 2024 Several green and hawksbill turtles are darting in and out of a vibrant coral cliff with seemingly millions of species, from sculpins to sun coral and everything in between. Scott Bay, Condé Nast Traveler, 29 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cliff.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English clif, from Old English; akin to Old High German klep cliff, Old Norse klif

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cliff was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near cliff

Cite this Entry

“Cliff.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


: a high steep surface of rock, earth, or ice

More from Merriam-Webster on cliff

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