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[tom-buh-loh] /ˈtɒm bəˌloʊ/
noun, plural tombolos.
a sand bar connecting an island to the mainland or to another island.
1899; < Italian < Latin tumulus mound. See tumulus Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for tom bolo


noun (pl) -los
a narrow sand or shingle bar linking a small island with another island or the mainland
Word Origin
C20: from Italian, from Latin tumulus mound; see tumulus
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for tom bolo



1899, from Italian tombolo "sand dune," from Latin tumulus "hillock, mound" (see thigh).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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tom bolo in Science
A sand or gravel bar that connects an island to the mainland or to another island.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for tom bolo


one or more sandbars or spits that connect an island to the mainland. A single tombolo may connect a tied island to the mainland, as at Marblehead, Mass. A double tombolo encloses a lagoon that eventually fills with sediment; fine examples of these occur off the coast of Italy. The shallower waters that occur between an island and the mainland are the loci of such features because sandbars form there.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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