: floating ice formed in a large sheet on the surface of a body of water

Examples of floe in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This was a tributary version of the break-up and floe of ice that historically has happened in all the Great Lakes. Andrew McKean, Outdoor Life, 27 Mar. 2023 Trackers placed close to one another on floes in the Barents Sea rapidly diverge in position. IEEE Spectrum, 14 Mar. 2023 Although their floe broke up before the 12-month goal, Rex says the expedition has been a great success. Tom Yulsman, Discover Magazine, 15 Dec. 2020 Lasse Rabenstein, the expedition’s chief scientist, and other sea-ice experts on board would have to choose a floe that can safely support the crew and equipment. New York Times, 4 Feb. 2022 On November 14, a storm arrived, and the men scrambled to find a secure floe. Adventure, 23 Dec. 2020 As part of the expedition, the Polarstern anchored to a large floe last fall and set up a camp on the ice, creating a small scientific village protected from wandering polar bears by alarms and scouts. Frank Jordans, Star Tribune, 12 Oct. 2020 And today it is filled with young floes of churning nitrogen ice. Robin George Andrews, Scientific American, 26 Mar. 2020 In mid-November, a violent storm opened up a new crack between the Polarstern and its floe, knocking over a 100-foot meteorological tower and threatening to snap power cables. Smithsonian Magazine, 12 Mar. 2020 See More

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

Word History


probably from Norwegian flo flat layer

First Known Use

1817, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of floe was in 1817

Dictionary Entries Near floe

Cite this Entry

“Floe.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/floe. Accessed 1 Oct. 2023.

Kids Definition


: a sheet or mass of floating ice

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