hay·​stack | \ ˈhā-ˌstak How to pronounce haystack (audio) \

Definition of haystack

1 : a stack of hay
2 : a vertical standing wave in turbulent river waters

Examples of haystack in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But tracing the source is like finding one haystack in a thousand acres of land -- then finding the needle buried within it. CBS News, "Romaine lettuce farmers frustrated by government response to E. coli outbreak," 15 May 2018 Although Short's decision-making has effectively led to the worst years of the club's history, there were also needles in haystacks-worth of correct choices along the way. SI.com, "FanView: Ellis Short's Reign Overview - Better the Devil You Know Than the Devil You Don't?," 30 Apr. 2018 The haystack is smaller and has more needles in it, a change that makes the game feel more linear and also more satisfying. Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica, "Review: Dragon Quest XI looks new but feels old," 4 Sep. 2018 Antiquing, while a nice way to spend a weekend afternoon, can be like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Jessica Cumberbatch Anderson, House Beautiful, "You Can Totally Win at Your First Country Auction. Here's How," 29 Aug. 2018 Finding the genetic differences that make one person taller or shorter than another is like looking for needles in a haystack. Brian Resnick, Vox, "How scientists are trying to predict your future with your genes," 23 Aug. 2018 Finding meteor fragments scattered on the seafloor might seem like trying to find a needle in a haystack, but the scientists participating in this hunt have a few advantages. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Scientists Are Hunting for Meteorite Fragments Off the Coast of Washington," 3 July 2018 Finding the needle in a haystack All told, sepsis is the most costly condition treated in U.S. hospitals, affecting one in three patients who die while hospitalized. Ian Haydon, Philly.com, "Working to save lives, Philly physicians find way to help patients confront death," 26 June 2018 Toney Armstrong: That's the needle in the haystack. Josh Gelman, CBS News, "New twist in probe of slain NBA star Lorenzen Wright," 12 May 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near haystack





hay sweep



Statistics for haystack

Last Updated

15 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for haystack

The first known use of haystack was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for haystack



English Language Learners Definition of haystack

: a large pile of hay


hay·​stack | \ ˈhā-ˌstak How to pronounce haystack (audio) \

Kids Definition of haystack

: a large pile of hay stored outdoors

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More from Merriam-Webster on haystack

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with haystack

Spanish Central: Translation of haystack

Nglish: Translation of haystack for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of haystack for Arabic Speakers

Comments on haystack

What made you want to look up haystack? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a strong desire or propensity

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