earth·​work ˈərth-ˌwərk How to pronounce earthwork (audio)
: an embankment or other construction made of earth
especially : one used as a field fortification
: the operations connected with excavations and embankments of earth
: a work of art consisting of a portion of land modified by an artist

Examples of earthwork in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Developers will then move forward with improving the property with earthwork, grading, roads, sidewalks, stormwater detention facilities, parking lots, new water mains and sanitary sewers, according to plans approved by board at its Jan. 15 meeting. Elizabeth Owens-Schiele, Chicago Tribune, 30 Jan. 2024 Founded in 1924, the contractor specializes in earthwork, utilities, demolition and deep foundations and has worked on private and public projects across the metro area like St. Paul’s Allianz field. Maraya King, Twin Cities, 10 Jan. 2024 Her father, the late C.W. McGrath, through successful earthwork and development companies, was responsible for the grading and general engineering work that underpins much local infrastructure from roadways to whole subdivisions. Paul Sisson, San Diego Union-Tribune, 29 Nov. 2023 Advertisement As construction trucks and bulldozers rumbled nearby, members of the media picked their way carefully around puddles that had sprung up from rain the night before to gaze at the new earthworks. Jessica Garrison, Los Angeles Times, 24 Oct. 2023 Next, the researchers used computer modeling to analyze known earthwork sites and predict their spread across the Amazon. Meghan Bartels, Scientific American, 5 Oct. 2023 In a separate, cavernous space, large mounds of earth displaced by the digging materialize like a massive earthwork. Carolina A. Miranda, Los Angeles Times, 11 Oct. 2023 In the past, researchers identified Amazonian earthworks by using high-resolution satellite data, but that could only work in areas where trees had been cleared. Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 6 Oct. 2023 That work yielded the estimate that there are at least 10,000 earthworks—perhaps even twice that many—hidden across the Amazon. Meghan Bartels, Scientific American, 5 Oct. 2023 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1633, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of earthwork was in 1633

Dictionary Entries Near earthwork

Cite this Entry

“Earthwork.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


earth·​work -ˌwərk How to pronounce earthwork (audio)
: something (as a raised bank or wall) constructed out of earth especially for protection

More from Merriam-Webster on earthwork

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