Definition of subterranean
1 : being, lying, or operating under the surface of the earth
2 : existing or working in secret : hidden a subterranean network of criminals
subterraneanlyor less commonly
Examples of subterranean in a sentence
a subterranean bunker that supposedly could withstand even an atomic blast
Did You Know?
A tunnel is a subterranean road or pathway, and a subway is a subterranean railway. The subterranean vaults at Fort Knox hold billions of dollars of gold reserves. Subterranean reservoirs called aquifers are tapped for water; in places where the pressure on the subterranean water is great enough, a hole drilled in the ground will bring it bubbling to the surface.
Origin and Etymology of subterranean
Latin subterraneus, from sub- + terra earth — more at thirst
First Known Use: 1603
SUBTERRANEAN Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of subterranean for English Language Learners
: located or living under the surface of the ground
: existing or working in secret
SUBTERRANEAN Defined for Kids
Definition of subterranean for Students
: being, lying, or operating under the surface of the earth a subterranean lake
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up subterranean? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).