Definition of wilderness
1a (1) : a tract or region uncultivated and uninhabited by human beings (2) : an area essentially undisturbed by human activity together with its naturally developed life communityb : an empty or pathless area or region in remote wildernesses of space groups of nebulae are found — G. W. Gray †1960c : a part of a garden devoted to wild growth
2 obsolete : wild or uncultivated state
3a : a confusing multitude or mass : an indefinitely great number or quantity I would not have given it for a wilderness of monkeys — William Shakespeareb : a bewildering situation those moral wildernesses of civilized life — Norman Mailer
Examples of wilderness in a Sentence
She enjoys hikes through the wilderness.
released the wolf back into the wilderness
Recent Examples of wilderness from the Web
Why did the owner pick you as her interior wilderness guide?
According to the very serious Discovery Channel voice-over, these folks were born and raised far from civilization in the wilderness of Alaska.
Visits to a birch syrup maker, an oyster farm and the famous cooking school at Tutka Bay Lodge are interspersed with wilderness adventures including dog sledding on a glacier and wildlife watching.
Crude oil might be the first thing to spring to mind but its vast wilderness also presents an economic opportunity, and the government wants to cash in.
These were the leaders among the pioneers that came to the wilderness and tamed it.
In traditional Bachelorette fashion, Rachel decided to settle the long-running, borderline obsessive feud between Kenny and Lee during a two-on-one set in the wilderness.
Two-On-One Date Kenny and Lee are air lifted to an undisclosed location in the Norwegian wilderness to duke it out for Rachel’s love.
Larkins worked on both sides of the border with the 93rd Engineers, one of several black regiments sent north to help cut and hack through virgin wilderness.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wilderness.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of wilderness
Middle English, from wildern wild, from Old English wilddēoren of wild beasts
First Known Use: 13th centurySee Words from the same year
WILDERNESS Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of wilderness for English Language Learners
: a wild and natural area in which few people live
WILDERNESS Defined for Kids
Definition of wilderness for Students
: an area in its natural state in which few or no people live
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up wilderness? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).