trap·​door ˈtrap-ˈdȯr How to pronounce trapdoor (audio)
: a lifting or sliding door covering an opening (as in a roof, ceiling, or floor)

Examples of trapdoor in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Oregon officials declare state of emergency to address fentanyl crisis in Portland Fentanyl was stored, in part, in a trapdoor beneath the day care floor, officials said. Aaron Katersky, ABC News, 10 June 2024 People and things appear inside it as if by magic (in reality, through a trapdoor). Sara Holdren, Vulture, 25 Feb. 2024 The surgery is a trapdoor bypass, called a Trabeculectomy, which is delicate and requires many post-op visits. Kyle J. Russell, USA TODAY, 11 May 2024 In the play, a hunting dog has to sit patiently inside a glass house, with a trapdoor underneath, without moving or turning his head, while men with deer heads run around the stage. Nick Paumgarten, The New Yorker, 6 May 2024 The stage included rising platforms and trapdoors that allowed Madonna and her 26 dancers to appear and disappear with the precision of a Broadway cast. Stefan Stevenson, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 25 Mar. 2024 At one point in the tour, visitors were asked to climb through a trapdoor in a floor and descend an unsecured ladder with flashlights to a dark basement. Eric Adler, Kansas City Star, 22 Mar. 2024 But wait, there’s more: A separate, ventilated shoe compartment opens up from the bottom of the backpack like a trapdoor. L.a. Hubilla, Peoplemag, 10 Apr. 2024 At one point, the host of the tour opened a trapdoor in the floor for customers to descend a shaky, unsecured ladder into a dark hole. Eric Adler, Kansas City Star, 22 Mar. 2024

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of trapdoor was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near trapdoor

Cite this Entry

“Trapdoor.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


trap·​door ˈtrap-ˈdō(ə)r How to pronounce trapdoor (audio)
: a lifting or sliding door covering or hiding an opening in a roof, ceiling, or floor

More from Merriam-Webster on trapdoor

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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