lava lamp


plural lava lamps
: a decorative lamp constructed of a transparent glass container filled with liquid and wax that is heated by an incandescent bulb which melts the wax and causes it to form random moving shapes within the liquid
Lava lamps are back—and not just among retro hipsters lounging on shag rugs and waterbeds.Richard A. Kerr
The lava lamp on my son's bureau gives him a vantage point to ponder the colorful blobs rising and falling as their temperature and density change.Benjamin A. Brooks

Examples of lava lamp in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Advertisement The trailers, crafted by Pierson and her wife, have their own unique 70s-era decor that includes yellow and orange curtains, bright furniture and color walls including one splattered with orange lava lamp shapes. Ruben Vives, Los Angeles Times, 3 May 2024 Scientists, as well as local high school and college students, used fun and games, plus a few robots, homemade lava lamps, and crowd-pleasing demos, to inspire interest among young people in the STEM disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Lori Weisberg, San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 Mar. 2024 There are blue seats at the bar, one wall that looks like a lava lamp, one wall with sparkles, an inflatable alien and lamps that look like circular spaceships. Carlos Rico, San Diego Union-Tribune, 20 Feb. 2024 The shades were drawn; a lava lamp bubbled in the background. Reid Forgrave, New York Times, 8 Dec. 2023 The characters emote with the rich, sticky languor of a lava lamp, and none come to life with the force of those in the works to which Catán nods. Zachary Woolfe, New York Times, 17 Nov. 2023 Activity-of-the-month mailer Gillett’s elementary schooler is now up to the Tinker Crate level of these STEAM-inspired (as in science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) subscription boxes, building flashing circuits and lava lamps. Grace Smith,, 9 Nov. 2023 Reviews have been almost as bad as Hockney’s; New York’s Jerry Saltz compared it to being in the presence of a giant lava lamp. Curbed, 5 Apr. 2023 Over time, a mantle plume of magma had formed beneath the Depression, pushing hot rocks up against the surface, like globs of oil rising in a lava lamp. Ashley Stimpson, Popular Mechanics, 21 June 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'lava lamp.' 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

1965, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lava lamp was in 1965

Dictionary Entries Near lava lamp

Cite this Entry

“Lava lamp.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

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