lam

1 of 3

verb

lammed; lamming

transitive verb

: to beat soundly : thrash

intransitive verb

1
2
: to flee hastily : scram

lam

2 of 3

noun

: sudden or hurried flight especially from the law
on the lam

Lam

3 of 3

abbreviation

Lamentations

Examples of lam in a Sentence

Verb let's lam out of this hellhole while there's still time Noun the prisoners were recaptured after only three days on the lam
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
No studio would finance the feature, about a whorehouse exhibitionist who lams it after being framed for murder — so director Melvin Van Peebles financed it himself with a boost from Bill Cosby, who gave him a $50,000 loan. Andrew Lawrence, Peoplemag, 17 Feb. 2024 One of those classic films that’s as good as its reputation (and maybe even better), Billy Wilder’s high-spirited comedy stars Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon as jazz musicians who have to lam it after witnessing a mob crime. Keith Phipps, Rolling Stone, 1 May 2023 Ryan Gosling stars as Court Gentry, a CIA agent forced to lam it after uncovering some secrets. Tim Chan, Rolling Stone, 5 July 2022
Noun
Six months later, he was found in Costa Rica and extradited back to Colorado (Hunsaker later claimed in court filings that going on the lam was his lawyer’s idea). Zach Everson, Forbes, 29 Mar. 2024 Thelma & Louise This Golden Globe-winning film is about two resourceful woman who go on the lam after shooting their attacker, taking off in a ’66 Thunderbird for an adventure throughout the desert Southwest in Utah. Krista Simmons, Sunset Magazine, 7 July 2023 Rundo went on the lam in 2019 and avoided his initial charges, which were dismissed by a district court judge but then reinstated by a federal appeals court in San Francisco. Will Carless, USA TODAY, 28 Apr. 2023 The film chronicles the tale of a 13-year-old boy left to fend for himself and his younger sibling in 1880s’ Kansas, with the teen ultimately going on the lam with his grandfather (played by Baldwin) after the child is condemned to death for accidentally killing a rancher, per IMDb. BostonGlobe.com, 22 Oct. 2021 The Shehecheyanu Blessing Ba-ruch A-tah A-do-noi E-loi-hei-nu Me-lech ha-o-lam she-he-chee-ya-nu v'ki-yi-ma-nu vi-hi-gi-ya-nu liz-man ha-zeh. Jamie Ballard, Woman's Day, 27 Feb. 2023 True Romance — also marked the beginning of a compelling lovers-on-the-lam theme that Beyoncé and Jay-Z have continued to build upon for two decades, often pulling from film history in the process. Sydney Urbanek, Billboard, 23 Mar. 2022 No one has seen Flaco eat during his six days on the lam, said David Barrett, who runs birding Twitter accounts including Manhattan Bird Alert, Brooklyn Bird Alert and Bronx Bird Alert. Karen Matthews, Fortune, 9 Feb. 2023 End of the Road: After 30 years on the lam as one of Italy’s most wanted fugitives, the mobster Matteo Messina Denaro was quietly arrested in Palermo. Jason Horowitz, New York Times, 30 Jan. 2023

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

Word History

Etymology

Verb

perhaps of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse lemja to thrash; akin to Old English lama lame

First Known Use

Verb

1595, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Noun

circa 1897, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lam was in 1595

Dictionary Entries Near lam

Cite this Entry

“Lam.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lam. Accessed 25 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

lam

1 of 2 verb
lammed; lamming
1
2
: to flee hastily

lam

2 of 2 noun
: a sudden or hurried flight especially from the law
on the lam

More from Merriam-Webster on lam

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!