\ ˈtərf How to pronounce turf (audio) \
plural turfs\ ˈtərfs How to pronounce turfs (audio) \ also turves\ ˈtərvz How to pronounce turves (audio) \

Definition of turf

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the upper stratum of soil bound by grass and plant roots into a thick mat also : a piece of this
b : an artificial substitute for this (as on a playing field)
2a : territory considered by a gang to be under its control
b : territory sense 2 have to play two of the last three games on hostile turf— Joe Klein in chapter two, the author is on unfamiliar turf also : a sphere of activity or influence people who could hurt him on his own foreign-policy turfWall Street Jour.
3a : a track or course for horse racing
b : the sport or business of horse racing
b : a piece of peat dried for fuel


turfed; turfing; turfs

Definition of turf (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cover with turf
2 chiefly British : to eject forcibly : kick usually used with out

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Other Words from turf


turfy \ ˈtər-​fē How to pronounce turfy (audio) \ adjective

Examples of turf in a Sentence

Noun a lawn made by laying turfs Synthetic turf was installed in the playing field instead of grass. playing fields with artificial turfs The team played on home turf.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Conley lay motionless on the turf and was strapped to a stretcher and loaded onto a cart for precautionary measures with 5:06 left in the third quarter. Jon Becker, The Mercury News, "Raiders CB Gareon Conley taken off field, Gruden says he should be OK," 9 Sep. 2019 Stow, ranked No. 23 in the cleveland.com top 25, used big plays on offense and defense to ruin the debut of the new turf at Sharkey Stadium. Ryan Isley | Special To Cleveland.com, cleveland.com, "No. 23 Stow posts 34-21 road upset over No. 6 Barberton in high school football," 6 Sep. 2019 Dirt became a tradition that stuck, even after the advent of artificial turf. Los Angeles Times, "Trona High’s once-mighty Sandmen fight to keep football alive in wake of earthquakes," 28 Aug. 2019 But now change may be coming to this corner of Manhattan — in the form of artificial turf. Andrea Salcedo, New York Times, "Pave Our Paradise With Fake Grass? Skateboarders Say No Way," 25 Aug. 2019 Others included installing about $100,000 of artificial turf to cover what is typically asphalt surrounding the field’s perimeter. Matt Kawahara, SFChronicle.com, "Raiders beat Packers on 80-yard field in Winnipeg," 22 Aug. 2019 The issue with the playing surface was over a spot of temporary turf where the CFL goalpost would be anchored. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, "Packers, Raiders play preseason game on shortened field in Winnipeg, Canada," 20 Aug. 2019 Ace Cafe Orlando is planning to improve its outdoor space by adding 15,000 square feet of artificial turf to its 3-acre downtown property. Austin Fuller, orlandosentinel.com, "Ace Cafe Orlando adds a downtown ‘lawn’ for events," 5 Aug. 2019 The fields Pasher calls home have been a rotating patch of turf throughout his career. Tyler Kraft, Indianapolis Star, "After winding career, Indy Eleven's leading scorer Tyler Pasher finds his form — and a home," 18 July 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb By turfing the British out, Gálvez denied them a port in the Gulf of Mexico. John Kelly, Washington Post, "The Spaniard who helped win the Revolutionary War has a new statue in D.C.," 17 July 2019 Bayern are in somewhat of a transitional period after losing club legends Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery and Rafinha, as well as turfing out Mats Hummels in a bid to liven up their ageing squad. SI.com, "Bayern Munich: Schalke May Have Been Dispatched But Die Roten Must Improve to Retain Bundesliga," 25 Aug. 2019 Hours into office, Johnson turfed Hunt out of the job and gave it to his hardline Brexiteer colleague, Dominic Raab. Nic Robertson, CNN, "Boris Johnson stakes future on Donald Trump after Brexit. The gamble may break Britain," 24 Aug. 2019 That would need at least some Conservative MPs to vote to bring down their own government, something that has not happened since rebel Tories helped turf out Neville Chamberlain in 1940. The Economist, "To stop no-deal, Tory MPs must be ready to bring down Boris Johnson," 27 July 2019 In San Jose, 397 employees were turfed, and another 91 workers lost their jobs at the company’s offices in Milpitas, according to the California WARN Act filing. Levi Sumagaysay, The Mercury News, "Cisco lays off nearly 500 workers in San Jose and Milpitas," 14 Aug. 2019 And with 52 of 55 seats on the council held by Labour, there was little prospect of the party being turfed out and the company shut down by a new administration. The Economist, "Robin Hood Energy, the company bringing power to the people," 3 May 2018 Damaged property, Zaremba Drive: A Zaremba resident called police at about 4:30 p.m. April 20 and said that earlier in the day, a silver sport-utility vehicle turfed his front lawn. Bob Sandrick, cleveland.com, "Drunk driver passes out behind wheel of SUV; silver SUV turfs lawn, hits garbage can: Brook Park police blotter," 4 May 2018 South Korea, after decades under strongmen who were less repressive but nevertheless still iron-fisted, has emerged as a democracy so vibrant that citizens peacefully turfed a president from office last year. Anna Fifield, Washington Post, "Talk of peace with North Korea has the South wondering: Will this time be different?," 28 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'turf.' 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 turf


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for turf


Middle English, from Old English; akin to Old High German zurba turf, Sanskrit darbha tuft of grass

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Statistics for turf

Last Updated

2 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for turf

The first known use of turf was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for turf


How to pronounce turf (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of turf

: the upper layer of ground that is made up of grass and plant roots
British : a square piece of turf cut out of the ground that is used for making lawns
: a material that looks like grass and that is used especially to cover athletic fields


\ ˈtərf How to pronounce turf (audio) \

Kids Definition of turf

1 : the upper layer of soil bound into a thick mat by roots of grass and other plants
2 : land covered with grass
3 : an area that is or is felt to be under an individual's control Fluffy won't allow any other dogs on his turf.

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More from Merriam-Webster on turf

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with turf

Spanish Central: Translation of turf

Nglish: Translation of turf for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of turf for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about turf

Comments on turf

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to spread as a report or rumor

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