duckboard

noun

duck·​board ˈdək-ˌbȯrd How to pronounce duckboard (audio)
: a boardwalk or slatted flooring laid on a wet, muddy, or cold surface
usually used in plural

Did you know?

The word duckboard was created during the early 20th century to describe the boards or slats of wood laid down to provide safe footing for the soldiers of World War I across wet or muddy ground in trenches or camps. The original duckboards didn't always work as intended though. According to one soldier, duckboards came by their name because someone walking on wet duckboards was liable to slide off them much like water slides off a duck's back. Today's duckboards appear in all kinds of places - from marshes to the floors of saunas. The word duck itself has been part of the English language since the days of Old English, when it had the form "dŪce."

Word History

First Known Use

1916, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of duckboard was in 1916

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Dictionary Entries Near duckboard

Cite this Entry

“Duckboard.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/duckboard. Accessed 22 Apr. 2024.

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