\ˈdün also ˈdyün \

Definition of dune 

: a hill or ridge of sand piled up by the wind

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Other Words from dune

dunelike \-​ˌlīk \ adjective

Examples of dune in a Sentence

We wandered over the dunes.

Recent Examples on the Web

Brazil Martin FrankenbergMatuetéFrankenberg is dialed in with incredible villas, Amazon River charter yachts, and expeditions to the dunes of Lençóis Maranhenses National Park. Paul Brady, Condé Nast Traveler, "2018 Top Travel Specialists We Trust," 19 Oct. 2018 Things that seemed immutable are eventually revealed to be as easily displaced as the shifting sands of a beach dune. Bijan Stephen, The Verge, "What we lost when we lost Blockbuster Video," 29 Aug. 2018 Rising above the dunes on New York’s Fire Island is a striking contemporary home on the market for $3.2 million. Candace Taylor, WSJ, "A New York Weekend Island Retreat Gets Fancy," 26 July 2018 Encouraged, Telfer began looking for more signs of geological activity on Pluto — namely, dunes, which are formed as the wind moves solid grains into regular ridge-like patterns. Amina Khan, latimes.com, "Dunes of methane ice? Tiny Pluto's surface reveals big surprises," 1 June 2018 Scientists didn’t expect to find windblown dunes on Pluto. Eva Botkin-kowacki, The Christian Science Monitor, "Pluto dune mystery challenges scientists' frame of reference," 1 June 2018 The only downside is that a heavy jacket and a hat are often still necessary in Bar Harbor in May. Block Island placed third in the survey thanks to its wild dunes and antique lighthouses. Christopher Muther, BostonGlobe.com, "Four New England destinations named hottest vacation spots for summer 2018," 15 May 2018 Before long the severity resolved itself into soft, finecrested waves of orange-seeming sand dunes, an ocean of them: the Sahara. Klara Glowczewska, Town & Country, "T&C Travel: Best of Morocco," 30 Mar. 2015 That’s a very different landscape from today’s dunes of reddish sand, and the ratios of oxygen-18 to other oxygen isotopes in the tooth enamel of the Ti’s al Ghadah fossils suggest a much wetter climate in the Nefud of 300,000 years ago. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Archaeologists find 300,000-year-old stone tools in Saudi Arabia," 29 Oct. 2018

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

1790, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for dune

French, from Old French, from Middle Dutch; akin to Old English dūn down — more at down

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Statistics for dune

Last Updated

15 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dune

The first known use of dune was in 1790

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More Definitions for dune



English Language Learners Definition of dune

: a hill of sand near an ocean or in a desert that is formed by the wind


\ˈdün, ˈdyün\

Kids Definition of dune

: a hill or ridge of sand piled up by the wind

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More from Merriam-Webster on dune

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dune

Spanish Central: Translation of dune

Nglish: Translation of dune for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dune for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about dune

Comments on dune

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to make faulty or ineffective

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