ˈkəl-di-ˌsak How to pronounce cul-de-sac (audio)
plural cul-de-sacs ˈkəl-di-ˌsaks How to pronounce cul-de-sac (audio)
also culs-de-sac ˈkəl(z)-di-ˌsak How to pronounce cul-de-sac (audio)
: a blind diverticulum or pouch
: a street or passage closed at one end
Our house is located on a quiet cul-de-sac.
: blind alley
If your job is a cul-de-sac, you have to quit or accept the fact that your career is over.Seth Godin

Examples of cul-de-sac in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The man made a U-turn in a cul-de-sac and then started driving toward one of the deputies, according to the sheriff’s department. Jaclyn Cosgrove, Los Angeles Times, 31 Mar. 2024 Here’s an extra hint to help guide you to the solution: The attaché ate his soufflé in the cul-de-sac waiting for his rendezvous. Erik Kain, Forbes, 28 Mar. 2024 One week, his team went to a home on a cul-de-sac with two kids and a swing set — the kind of place families take their children trick-or-treating. Lauren Peace, CNN, 27 Mar. 2024 Aguirre spoke Thursday from her front door on a cul-de-sac on Durance Court in the upper-middle-class neighborhood. Antonio Planas, NBC News, 21 Mar. 2024 The battle for the next two years of partisan political control will be waged door-to-door, from California’s beachside suburban cul-de-sacs to the tiny farm towns in the state’s fertile Central Valley. Laurel Rosenhall, Los Angeles Times, 14 Mar. 2024 In the late 1950s, the accomplished botanist and conservationist became the second owner of a spec house for an unrealized cul-de-sac development of concrete masonry residences. Jessica Ritz, Los Angeles Times, 27 Feb. 2024 An authentic craftsman-style ranch in a cul-de-sac, The Sage by Rodrock Homes is 90 days from completion and qualifies for the basement promotion. The Willows | A Covenant – Rodrock Homes Community, Kansas City Star, 25 Feb. 2024 The abode is positioned on a cul-de-sac and tucked behind a gate, kind of like a modern, monolithic fortress. Abby Montanez, Robb Report, 24 Feb. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cul-de-sac.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


French, literally, bottom of the bag

First Known Use

1738, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of cul-de-sac was in 1738

Dictionary Entries Near cul-de-sac

Cite this Entry

“Cul-de-sac.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition

: a blind diverticulum or pouch
also : the closed end of such a pouch

More from Merriam-Webster on cul-de-sac

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!