\ ˈded-ˌend How to pronounce dead-end (audio) \

Definition of dead-end

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : lacking opportunities especially for advancement a dead-end job
b : lacking an exit a dead-end street
2 : unruly dead-end kids


\ ˈded-ˈend How to pronounce dead-end (audio) \
dead-ended; dead-ending; dead-ends

Definition of dead-end (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to come to a dead end : terminate the road dead-ends at the lake the investigation dead-ended

dead end

\ ˈded-ˈend How to pronounce dead end (audio) \

Definition of dead end (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : an end (as of a street) without an exit
2 : a position, situation, or course of action that leads to nothing further

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Other Words from dead-end


dead-endedness \ ˌded-​ˈen-​dəd-​nəs How to pronounce dead end (audio) \ noun

Examples of dead-end in a Sentence

Noun We came to a dead end and had to turn around. My career has hit a dead end.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun With Rebe's being a dead end, Samu takes off with Ari to continue the search. Olivia Truffaut-wong,, 22 June 2021 While on a routine patrol, police observed Land enter a vehicle and turn the lights off when police approached driving to the dead end of a street. Steve Sadin,, 21 June 2021 When the couple pulled up to their house, at the dead end of the street, no one was around. Jon Lee Anderson, The New Yorker, 7 June 2021 At the dead end that the Wild keeps running into during the playoffs is a wasteland of offenses gone bad. Sarah Mclellan, Star Tribune, 15 May 2021 The roundabout will connect Appleby Road to the south with an extension connecting what is now a dead end at Plainview Avenue to the north, as well as Rolling Hills. Stacy Ryburn, Arkansas Online, 3 May 2021 Most important of all, there is finally a public entrance at the corner facing Lake Merritt, which turns what had been a dead end into a dynamic space of connection, visual and physical. Michael J. Lewis, WSJ, 23 June 2021 In both cases, jet propulsion quickly became a dead end, not least because of the 1973 oil crisis, which rendered thirsty gas turbines unaffordable almost overnight. Ben Jones, CNN, 8 June 2021 Will their weird biology help extend human life spans, or are those ambitions a dead end? Save this story for later. Max G. Levy, Wired, 24 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dead-end.' 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 dead-end


1919, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1944, in the meaning defined above


1886, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Learn More About dead-end

Time Traveler for dead-end

Time Traveler

The first known use of dead-end was in 1886

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Dictionary Entries Near dead-end

dead duck




dead end


deadening felt

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Statistics for dead-end

Cite this Entry

“Dead-end.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for dead-end

dead end


English Language Learners Definition of dead end

: a street that ends instead of joining with another street so that there is only one way in and out of it
: a situation, plan, or way of doing something that leads to nothing further

dead end


Kids Definition of dead end

: an end (as of a street) with no way out

More from Merriam-Webster on dead-end

Nglish: Translation of dead-end for Spanish Speakers


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