tar pit

noun

Definition of tar pit

: an area in which natural bitumens collect and are exposed at the earth's surface and which tends to trap animals and preserve their hard parts (such as bones or teeth)

Examples of tar pit in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Stagg is usually accompanied by Sapphire and aide-de-camp Java (a super-strong Neanderthal that Stagg found preserved in a tar pit and somehow restored to life, who is also in love with Sapphire). Tribune News Service, cleveland, 2 Jan. 2021 The amoeba shape encroached on the tar pit, which is an active excavation site, and the director of the natural-history museum objected. Dana Goodyear, The New Yorker, 5 Oct. 2020 And like Sabbath, these guys get that channeling a trudge through the tar pits can yield much heavier results than playing fast. Ed Masley, azcentral, 5 Mar. 2020 They were mesmerized by the mammoth in the tar pits. Dorany Pinedastaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 27 Aug. 2019 The adjacent Los Angeles County Museum of Art, just west of the tar pits, is expected to break ground next year on a new building. Carolina A. Miranda, latimes.com, 6 June 2019 Lindsey said there are about a dozen known fossilized tar pits in the world: the western part of the Americas, the Caribbean, Trinidad, Cuba, Venezuela, southern Ecuador and northern Peru, and some less well studied in Asia. Ashley Strickland, CNN, 11 Oct. 2019 The tar pits and the accompanying George C. Page Museum have become landmarks in their own right, serving as a tourist standby and appearing in countless movies. Julia Wick, latimes.com, 7 June 2019 Vanderbilt University paleontologist Larisa DeSantis grew up in the Los Angeles area and frequently visited the tar pits in her youth, even taking museum classes on offer. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 6 Aug. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of tar pit

1839, in the meaning defined above

Learn More About tar pit

Time Traveler for tar pit

Time Traveler

The first known use of tar pit was in 1839

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near tar pit

Tarpeian

tar pit

tarpon

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for tar pit

Cite this Entry

“Tar pit.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tar%20pit. Accessed 27 Jan. 2022.

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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