terrain

noun
ter·​rain | \ tə-ˈrān also te- How to pronounce terrain (audio) \

Definition of terrain

1a(1) : a geographic area
(2) : a piece of land : ground
b : the physical features of a tract of land
3a : a field of knowledge or interest

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Examples of terrain in a Sentence

We had to drive over some rough terrain. We hiked through a variety of terrains.

Recent Examples on the Web

Explore the terrain of the Rocky Mountains with the whole family in a 4x4. Discover Magazine, "7 Family Friendly Bucket List Adventures in Beaver Creek," 17 Aug. 2018 Films by Elaine McMillion Sheldon and Matthew Heineman are among the most unflinching and disturbing portraits of a numbing and perilous terrain. Jeffrey Fleishman, latimes.com, "Documentary films explore the despair of America's heroin and opioid epidemic," 6 July 2018 Here in the Catatumbo region — a rugged terrain dotted with streams, oil fields and palm plantations — guerrilla groups have been fighting for three months to take over a former domain of FARC, the Marxist force disbanded under the peace deal. Anthony Faiola, Washington Post, "Two years after Colombia’s peace accord, the historic pact is in jeopardy," 16 June 2018 In other words, can humans cultivate a better terrain for their symbionts? Jason Pontin, WIRED, "The 19th-Century Crank Who Tried to Tell Us About the Microbiome," 15 June 2018 But helicopter images taken Monday show only a barren terrain covered in volcanic ash as far as the lens can reach. David Williams, CNN, "Guatemala hotel that proudly touted its volcano views is now covered in ash," 6 June 2018 Outbreaks have ranged over a terrain that spans thousands of miles from West Africa to Central Africa. Helen Branswell, STAT, "‘You’re holding your breath’: Scientists who toiled for years on an Ebola vaccine see the first one put to the test," 22 May 2018 Elias National Park and Preserve to experience its spectacular environment, a vast mountainous terrain dominated by glaciers and riven with furious meltwater. Nathaniel Wilder, Smithsonian, "A Daring Journey Into the Big Unknown of America’s Largest National Park," 18 Apr. 2018 The Air Force has entered the next phase in its development of a new, combat-ready Light Attack aircraft designed to maneuver close to terrain, support ground combat operations and operate closely with U.S. allies in an irregular warfare scenario. Kris Osborn, Fox News, "New Air Force light attack plane moves quickly toward combat," 21 Aug. 2018

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

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First Known Use of terrain

1766, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for terrain

French, land, ground, from Old French terrein, from Vulgar Latin *terranum, alteration of Latin terrenum, from neuter of terrenus of earth — more at terrene

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Statistics for terrain

Last Updated

11 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for terrain

The first known use of terrain was in 1766

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More Definitions for terrain

terrain

noun

English Language Learners Definition of terrain

: land of a particular kind

terrain

noun
ter·​rain | \ tə-ˈrān How to pronounce terrain (audio) \

Kids Definition of terrain

: the features of the surface of a piece of land hilly terrain swampy terrain

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Comments on terrain

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