pot·​hole | \ ˈpät-ˌhōl How to pronounce pothole (audio) \

Definition of pothole

1a : a circular hole formed in the rocky bed of a river by the grinding action of stones or gravel whirled round by the water
b : a sizable rounded often water-filled depression in land
2 : a pot-shaped hole in a road surface
3 : a usually minor difficulty or setback hit a pothole in her comeback attempt

Other Words from pothole

potholed \ ˈpät-​ˌhōld How to pronounce pothole (audio) \ adjective

Examples of pothole in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web MoreScrub Hub: Is climate change making Indianapolis' pothole problems even worse? Karl Schneider, The Indianapolis Star, 16 May 2022 She was thrown from a vehicle that hit a large pothole, and her head was run over. Gary Warth, San Diego Union-Tribune, 13 Mar. 2022 But a new forecast, showing state income tax receipts will grow for years to come, has shrunken that cliff to something less than a pothole. Keith M. Phaneuf, Hartford Courant, 8 May 2022 In what had been another standout performance from left-hander Bruce Zimmermann, the bobbles and bungles and botches in the fifth inning against the New York Yankees were a pothole that blew out the tire on Baltimore’s chances in the series finale. Andy Kostka, Baltimore Sun, 28 Apr. 2022 The woman told the officer that her vehicle sustained more than $170 in damage after striking a Brookpark Road pothole located in front of Walmart. John Benson, cleveland, 30 Mar. 2022 The state of Michigan’s dreams of a three-for-all run in the Division I, II and II NCAA women’s basketball tournaments hit, like so many drivers in the state, a pothole on Wednesday night, albeit in Birmingham, Alabama. Ryan Ford, Detroit Free Press, 24 Mar. 2022 Bolden said this is the first year Cincinnati has had more than 2,000 pothole repair requests. Brook Endale, The Enquirer, 25 Feb. 2022 Abingdon Road will be closed by the MTAfrom 9 p.m. to midnight tonight to fix a pothole at the I-95 bridge abutment, weather permitting, according to a Harford County spokesperson. Jason Fontelieu, baltimoresun.com, 10 Feb. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of pothole

1826, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Learn More About pothole

Time Traveler for pothole

Time Traveler

The first known use of pothole was in 1826

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near pothole

pot holder



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for pothole

Last Updated

30 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pothole.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pothole. Accessed 4 Jul. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for pothole


pot·​hole | \ ˈpät-ˌhōl How to pronounce pothole (audio) \

Kids Definition of pothole

: a deep round hole (as in a road)

More from Merriam-Webster on pothole

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pothole

Nglish: Translation of pothole for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pothole


Test Your Vocabulary

Which Word Does Not Belong?

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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