1 of 2


dialectal British : a resting or sleeping place : bed
: the resting or living place of a wild animal : den
tracked the bear back to its lair
: a refuge or place for hiding
a villain's lair


2 of 2


laired; lairing; lairs

transitive verb

chiefly Scotland : to cause to sink in mire

intransitive verb

chiefly Scotland : wallow

Example Sentences

Noun tracking the bear back to its lair She runs the project from her private lair in the suburbs.
Recent Examples on the Web
In summer 2020, the taproom moved out of the brewery’s famously cozy basement lair in North Portland, just east of the Broadway Bridge in the Leftbank Building, and took over the former Sting Ray Cafe space on the ground floor. oregonlive, 17 Feb. 2023 In the opening scenes, the audience sees a grown-up Christopher Robin and his wife Mary creeping around Pooh and Piglet’s ramshackle lair in the dark depths of Hundred Acre Wood. K.j. Yossman, Variety, 15 Feb. 2023 Cellar Calling all oenophiles: This moody lair is an excellent place to have a wine tasting. Kelsey Mulvey, House Beautiful, 15 Feb. 2023 The flagship Casino Royale appeared in the 2006 James Bond movie of the same name, as the floating lair of the villain, Le Chiffre. Michael Verdon, Robb Report, 26 Jan. 2023 Manila oversees the contest from a gritty lair beneath the streets of the country's capital city, where the cast debuts stunning runway creations. Joey Nolfi,, 30 Nov. 2022 Nestled discreetly on a hillside in Los Angeles’s historic Beachwood Canyon, just below the iconic Hollywood sign, sits a sleek postmodern lair. David Nash, ELLE Decor, 6 Oct. 2022 One day in early March last year, a Sama employee was at work reading an explicit story about Batman’s sidekick, Robin, being raped in a villain’s lair. Time, 18 Jan. 2023 In the trailer for the new ten-episode series, victims are tortured in a serial killer’s cliché lair. Vulture, 4 Nov. 2022 See More

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

Word History



Middle English, from Old English leger; akin to Old High German legar bed, Old English licgan to lie — more at lie


Scots lair mire

First Known Use


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


circa 1560, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of lair was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near lair

Cite this Entry

“Lair.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


: the den or resting place of a wild animal

More from Merriam-Webster on lair

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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