ˈlōm How to pronounce loam (audio)
 chiefly Northern & Midland  ˈlüm,
 New England also  ˈlu̇m
: a mixture (as for plastering) composed chiefly of moistened clay
: a coarse molding sand used in founding (see found entry 5)
: soil
specifically : a soil consisting of a friable mixture of varying proportions of clay, silt, and sand
ˈlō-mē How to pronounce loam (audio)

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The thin topsoil, never enriched here by glaciers that dragged loam over other parts of the Midwest, offered only a subsistence existence. Doug Struck, The Christian Science Monitor, 13 Sep. 2022 In my experience, Texas's three primary soil types are clay, sand and loam (sand, silt and a little clay) soil mixtures. Robby Brown, Forbes, 15 July 2022 Mass Natural also sells loam, potting soil, and mulch made with compost. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 7 July 2022 The rich loam inside began spilling out onto the white pebble pathways around the beds, an eyesore and a waste. Nevin Martell, Washington Post, 8 June 2022 For example, Warren says the Higher Education Act of 1964 empowers the president to cancel an unlimited amount of student loans for an unlimited amount of student loam borrowers. Zack Friedman, Forbes, 3 May 2022 It is composed of loam, and exhibits, upon being excavated, quite a homogenous appearance. Jeff Suess, The Enquirer, 8 May 2022 One picture, divided between a brick-red top and a loam-brown bottom, is in the formal tradition of color field painting. Washington Post, 29 Apr. 2022 Lovely violets open, with toasted spice, resinous botanicals, pine and loam layered on the nose. Sara L. Schneider, Robb Report, 11 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'loam.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English lom, from Old English lām clay, mud; akin to Old English līm lime

First Known Use

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of loam was in the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near loam

Cite this Entry

“Loam.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/loam. Accessed 30 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition


: soil entry 3 sense 2
especially : a soil consisting of a loose easily crumbled mixture of varying amounts of clay, silt, and sand
loamy adjective

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