follow Dictionary.com

What's the "een" in Halloween?

badlands

[bad-landz] /ˈbædˌlændz/
plural noun
1.
a barren area in which soft rock strata are eroded into varied, fantastic forms.
Origin
1850-1855
1850-55, Americanism; bad1 + land + -s3; translation of French mauvaises terres, perhaps based on expressions in AmerInd languages, alluding to the difficulty in traversing such country
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for badlands
  • Think constellations, fall's cool evening air, and moonrises over the badlands.
  • And yet around the world the country is thought of as if it consisted only of the badlands.
  • It's a stretch of the imagination, but the arid badlands that reach toward the horizon once were verdant wetlands.
  • badlands has beginner hills for youngsters and large slopes for the more daring.
  • badlands also serves salads, and has a children's menu that includes chicken nuggets, mini burritos and beef and cheese tacos.
British Dictionary definitions for badlands

badlands

/ˈbædˌlændz/
plural noun
1.
any deeply eroded barren area
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for badlands
n.

"arid, highly eroded regions of the western U.S.," 1852, from bad + land (n.). Applied to urban districts of crime and vice since 1892 (originally with reference to Chicago).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Article for badlands

area cut and eroded by many deep, tortuous gullies with intervening saw-toothed divides. The gullies extend from main rivers back to tablelands about 150 m (500 feet) and higher. The gully bottoms increase in gradient from almost flat near the main rivers to nearly vertical at the edges of the tablelands. Because the rocks are not uniform in character, differences in erosion result in stair-step profiles. The joining and separating of the gullies cause many isolated irregular spires, small flat-topped buttes, or mesas, and produce a landscape of jagged, fluted, and seemingly inaccessible hills

Learn more about badlands with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for badlands

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for badlands

12
15
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for badlands