plural quagmires
: soft miry land that shakes or yields under the foot
: a difficult, precarious, or entrapping position : predicament

Examples of quagmire in a Sentence

That was six months ago, when the Defense secretary laughingly dismissed the idea that Iraq was, or could turn into, a quagmire. But as Rumsfeld sat down last Friday morning to face Sen. John McCain, who spent six years in a Vietnamese prison, no one was laughing. Michael Hirsh et al., Newsweek, 17 Nov. 2003
State involvement will create a vast bioethical quagmire. Even if everyone magically agrees that improving a child's memory is as valid as avoiding dyslexia, there will still be things taxpayers aren't ready to pay for—genes of unproven benefit, say, or alterations whose downsides may exceed the upside. Robert Wright, Time, 11 Jan.1999
the party was once again facing its quadrennial quagmire: the candidate sufficiently liberal to win the nomination would be too liberal for the general election a protracted custody dispute that became a judicial quagmire
Recent Examples on the Web His young age, small amount of Triple-A experience, lack of repetitions at second base and the quagmire that is his service time were all factors that rightfully fueled skeptics. Jacob Calvin Meyer, Baltimore Sun, 22 Mar. 2024 For Mnuchin, 61, TikTok represents a tantalizing business opportunity and a potential political quagmire. Tony Romm, Washington Post, 27 Mar. 2024 The root of this strategic quagmire lies in the shifting sands of international politics and economics. Armstrong Williams, Orange County Register, 3 Feb. 2024 The British, however, relinquished the Mandate in May 1948 without ever implementing the partition, leaving behind a post-imperial quagmire amid a quickly hardening Cold War landscape. TIME, 1 Feb. 2024 See all Example Sentences for quagmire 

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

1566, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of quagmire was in 1566

Dictionary Entries Near quagmire

Cite this Entry

“Quagmire.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quagmire. Accessed 19 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


: soft spongy wet ground that shakes or gives way under the foot
: a difficult situation from which it is hard to escape

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