: characterized or developed by felling and burning trees to clear land especially for temporary agriculture
: extremely ruthless and unsparing
slash-and-burn tactics
slash-and-burn criticism

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Coupled with their promise not to raise taxes, that leaves the GOP to consider a slash-and-burn approach to a slew of federal programs and agencies whose budgets are controlled by Congress. Carl Hulse And Catie Edmondson, BostonGlobe.com, 8 Mar. 2023 On the fringes, slash-and-burn farming has scarred the hillsides, sending red dust and gritty sand over the landscape when the dry-season winds blow. Caroline Chen, ProPublica, 7 Mar. 2023 Countries in the Amazon, such as Brazil, showed higher levels of particulate matter during August and September, potentially associated with emissions from farmers clearing land with fire, known as slash-and-burn cultivation. Kasha Patel, Anchorage Daily News, 7 Mar. 2023

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

Word History

First Known Use

1939, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of slash-and-burn was in 1939

Dictionary Entries Near slash-and-burn

Cite this Entry

“Slash-and-burn.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/slash-and-burn. Accessed 22 Mar. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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