waste·​land | \ ˈwāst-ˌland How to pronounce wasteland (audio) also -lənd \

Definition of wasteland

1 : barren or uncultivated land a desert wasteland
2 : an ugly often devastated or barely inhabitable place or area
3 : something (such as a way of life) that is spiritually and emotionally arid and unsatisfying

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Examples of wasteland in a Sentence

The outskirts of the city became a grim industrial wasteland. That part of the country is a cultural wasteland. the vast wasteland of television
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Recent Examples on the Web The former storage wasteland is now a cozy, functional office with a mod, masculine vibe. BostonGlobe.com, 18 June 2021 The city has taken on the appearance of a wasteland, with garbage piling up and business districts empty. John Otis And Juan Forero, WSJ, 12 May 2021 The back half of the year, from September onward, is a wasteland. Luke Winkie, Vulture, 29 May 2021 The current graphics card landscape may be a barren wasteland, but there is a glimmer of hope on the horizon. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, 18 May 2021 The period between the presidencies of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt was not a historical wasteland punctuated only by Reconstruction and racial tension, railroads and the accumulation of great riches. BostonGlobe.com, 22 Apr. 2021 Weeks later, vast stretches of the city were still a wasteland. Delphine Schrank, The New York Review of Books, 17 Mar. 2021 At the dead end that the Wild keeps running into during the playoffs is a wasteland of offenses gone bad. Sarah Mclellan, Star Tribune, 15 May 2021 Tubby humans in personal mobility vehicles leaving planet Earth on a luxury spaceship as robots like WALL-E clean up the industrial wasteland. Andy Kessler, WSJ, 16 May 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for wasteland

Time Traveler

The first known use of wasteland was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near wasteland

waste-heat boiler


wastel bread

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Statistics for wasteland

Last Updated

10 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Wasteland.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wasteland. Accessed 30 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for wasteland



English Language Learners Definition of wasteland

: land where nothing can grow or be built : land that is not usable
: an ugly and often ruined place or area
: something that is being compared to a large, empty area of land because it has no real value or interest


waste·​land | \ ˈwāst-ˌland How to pronounce wasteland (audio) \

Kids Definition of wasteland

: land that is barren or not fit for crops

More from Merriam-Webster on wasteland

Nglish: Translation of wasteland for Spanish Speakers


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