worm·​hole | \ ˈwərm-ˌhōl How to pronounce wormhole (audio) \

Definition of wormhole

1 : a hole or passage burrowed by a worm
2 : a hypothetical structure of space-time envisioned as a tunnel connecting points that are separated in space and time

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Did You Know?

If you associate "wormhole" with quantum physics and sci-fi, you'll probably be surprised to learn that the word has been around since Shakespeare's day - although, admittedly, he used it more literally than most modern writers. To Shakespeare, a "wormhole" was simply a hole made by a worm, but even the Bard subtly linked "wormholes" to the passage of time; for example, in The Rape of Lucrece, he notes time's destructive power "to fill with worm-holes stately monuments." To modern astrophysicists, a wormhole isn't a tunnel wrought by a slimy invertebrate, but a theoretical tunnel between two black holes or other points in space-time, providing a shortcut between its end points.

Examples of wormhole in a Sentence

We found tiny wormholes in the potatoes.

Recent Examples on the Web

One possibility is that the creatures came from a wormhole in space from another point in the galaxy. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "The weird Upside Down science behind 'Stranger Things'," 4 July 2019 The crew is tasked with building a wormhole to the titular planet, a major job for the crew and one with massive political implications. Everdeen Mason, Washington Post, "Weirdly Specific Mixtape Vol. 5: Science fiction for foodies," 24 June 2019 Perhaps each particle is free to fractionate into millions of dispersed parts in its own private cosmic wormhole, until a measurement forces it to become whole at some particular location, chosen probabilistically. Quanta Magazine, "How to Tame Quantum Weirdness," 16 Feb. 2017 After a few disorienting minutes of traveling through the wormhole, my ship materializes amid a cluster of other ships, mostly large-scale freighters. Andrew Webster, The Verge, "No Man’s Sky travel diary: leaving the nest," 1 Aug. 2018 But what if this all-stories-welcome wormhole closes? Taylor Rainbolt, Glamour, "Alana Mayo, Michael B. Jordan's Secret Weapon, Is Poised to Take Over Hollywood," 12 Oct. 2018 As The Cut discovered, the Leonardo DiCaprio doppelgänger (or a young DiCaprio lost in an Inception-style wormhole?) is hiding among the shampoo bars and shower gel in a Massachusetts Lush retail store. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Lush Employee Goes Viral for Being Leonardo DiCaprio's Doppelgänger," 15 Aug. 2018 The most massive rap website to emerge from the era was WorldStarHipHop, which rewrote the template in comic sans and offered dystopian wormholes of street rap, twerking videos and amateur fistfights shakily taped on cellphones. Jeff Weiss, latimes.com, "How Instagram and YouTube help underground hip-hop artists and tastemakers find huge audiences," 4 July 2018 The artistic installation features 100 pounds of moss, lichens, other botanical specimens and string models of Einstein-Rosen bridges, or wormholes. Christine Clarridge, The Seattle Times, "Explore Seattle’s map of ‘high weirdness’: Ghost canoe, rumored troll, Hell Mouth — and more," 28 June 2018

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

1593, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near wormhole

worm fence

worm gear

worm grass


worm into



Statistics for wormhole

Last Updated

18 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for wormhole

The first known use of wormhole was in 1593

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More Definitions for wormhole



English Language Learners Definition of wormhole

: a hole or passage made by a worm
technical : a hole or tunnel in outer space that some people believe connects two very distant places

More from Merriam-Webster on wormhole

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wormhole

Nglish: Translation of wormhole for Spanish Speakers

Comments on wormhole

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to complain fretfully

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