wilderness


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wil·der·ness

 (wĭl′dər-nĭs)
n.
1. An unsettled, uncultivated region, especially:
a. A large tract of land that has not been significantly affected by human activities.
b. A tract of land officially protected from development and other high-impact human activities.
c. A barren or desolate area; a wasteland.
2. Something characterized by bewildering vastness, perilousness, or unchecked profusion: a wilderness of unknown city streets; a wilderness of voices.
3. A state of neglect, powerlessness, or disfavor: "The failure of the Clinton health plan in 1994 opened the door to the Republicans' capture of Congress after forty years in the wilderness" (Jacob S. Hacker).

[Middle English, from Old English *wilddēornes, probably from wilddēor, wild beast : wilde, wild + dēor, wild animal.]

wilderness

(ˈwɪldənɪs)
n
1. (Physical Geography) a wild, uninhabited, and uncultivated region
2. any desolate tract or area
3. a confused mass or collection
4. a voice in the wilderness a voice crying in the wilderness a person, group, etc, making a suggestion or plea that is ignored
5. in the wilderness no longer having influence, recognition, or publicity
[Old English wildēornes, from wildēor wild beast (from wild + dēor beast, deer) + -ness; related to Middle Dutch wildernisse, German Wildernis]

Wilderness

(ˈwɪldənɪs)
n
1. (Placename) the Wilderness the barren regions to the south and east of Palestine, esp those in which the Israelites wandered before entering the Promised Land and in which Christ fasted for 40 days and nights
2. (Theology) the Wilderness the barren regions to the south and east of Palestine, esp those in which the Israelites wandered before entering the Promised Land and in which Christ fasted for 40 days and nights

wil•der•ness

(ˈwɪl dər nɪs)

n.
1. a wild, uncultivated, uninhabited region, as of forest or desert.
2. a part of a garden set apart for plants to grow unchecked.
3. a bewildering mass or collection.
[1150–1200; Middle English; Old English *wil(d)dēornes= either wil(d)dēor wild beast (see wild, deer) + -nes -ness, or wilddēoren wild, savage (wilddēor + -en -en2) + (-n)es -ness]

Wil•der•ness

(ˈwɪl dər nɪs)

n.
a wooded area in NE Virginia: several battles fought here in 1864 between the armies of Grant and Lee.

Wilderness

 a mingled confusion; a large number of people, animals, or things, 1588.
Examples: wilderness of interminable air, 1821; of books, 1868; of more rare conceits, 1824; of enquiry, 1664; of faults or follies, 1775; of masts on the rivers, 1857; of monkeys, 1596; of sea, 1588; of steeples, 1857; of tigers, 1588; of trees, 1613; of waves, 1865; of wretches, 1616.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.wilderness - (politics) a state of disfavor; "he led the Democratic party back from the wilderness"
political relation, politics - social relations involving intrigue to gain authority or power; "office politics is often counterproductive"
disfavor, disfavour - the state of being out of favor; "he is in disfavor with the king"
2.Wilderness - a wooded region in northeastern Virginia near Spotsylvania where bloody but inconclusive battles were fought in the American Civil War
Old Dominion, Old Dominion State, VA, Virginia - a state in the eastern United States; one of the original 13 colonies; one of the Confederate States in the American Civil War
3.wilderness - a wild and uninhabited area left in its natural conditionwilderness - a wild and uninhabited area left in its natural condition; "it was a wilderness preserved for the hawks and mountaineers"
barren, wasteland, waste - an uninhabited wilderness that is worthless for cultivation; "the barrens of central Africa"; "the trackless wastes of the desert"
bush - a large wilderness area
frontier - a wilderness at the edge of a settled area of a country; "the individualism of the frontier in Andrew Jackson's day"
4.wilderness - a bewildering profusion; "the duties of citizenship are lost sight of in the wilderness of interests of individuals and groups"; "a wilderness of masts in the harbor"
profuseness, profusion, richness, cornucopia - the property of being extremely abundant; "the profusion of detail"; "the idiomatic richness of English"

wilderness

noun
1. wilds, waste, desert, wasteland, uncultivated region He looked out over a wilderness of mountain, lake and forest.
2. tangle, confusion, maze, muddle, clutter, jumble, welter, congeries, confused mass The neglected cemetery was a wilderness of crumbling gravestones and parched grass.

wilderness

noun
1. A tract of unproductive land:
badlands, barren (often used in plural), desert, waste, wasteland.
2. An uninhabited region left in its natural state:
Translations
قَفْر، بَريَّه
divočina
ødemarkørken
erämaakairakorpi
désertérème
óbyggî, öræfi, eyîimörk
dykynė
tuksnesīga/mežonīga vieta
dziczmanowcepustkowiepustynia
vahşî araziyaban

wilderness

[ˈwɪldənɪs] N (= desert) → desierto m; (= hills) → monte m; (= virgin land) → tierra f virgen
a wilderness of ruinsun desierto de ruinas
he spent four years in the wilderness before returning to power (fig) → pasó cuatro años al margen de la política antes de volver al poder

wilderness

[ˈwɪldərnəs] n
(= wild region) → régions fpl sauvages
area of wilderness, wilderness area → espace m naturel
one of the largest areas of wilderness in North America → l'un des plus vastes espaces naturels d'Amérique du Nord
in the wilderness (= not prominent, not active) → en pleine traversée du désert

wilderness

nWildnis f; (fig)Wüste f; a voice crying in the wildernessdie Stimme eines Rufenden in der Wüste

wilderness

[ˈwɪldənɪs] n (gen) → deserto; (neglected garden) → giungla

wilderness

(ˈwildənəs) noun
(a) desert or wild area of a country etc.
References in classic literature ?
The dim, dusty room, with the busts staring down from the tall bookcases, the cozy chairs, the globes, and best of all, the wilderness of books in which she could wander where she liked, made the library a region of bliss to her.
He regretted the fate that had not let him live in a simpler and sweeter time when at the beckoning of some strange cloud in the sky men left their lands and houses and went forth into the wilderness to create new races.
I'm a lot younger than some of these boys who are afraid to tackle a trip through a tropical wilderness," and he playfully nudged Tom in the ribs.
Fuchs told me that the sunflowers were introduced into that country by the Mormons; that at the time of the persecution, when they left Missouri and struck out into the wilderness to find a place where they could worship God in their own way, the members of the first exploring party, crossing the plains to Utah, scattered sunflower seed as they went.
But there was no recent picture, none which suggested the Robert who had gone away five days ago, leaving a void and wilderness behind him.
The whole of that wilderness, in which the latter incidents of the legend occurred, is nearly a wilderness still, though the red man has entirely deserted this part of the state.
Thus we behold Kentucke, lately an howling wilderness, the habitation of savages and wild beasts, become a fruitful field; this region, so favourably distinguished by nature, now become the habitation of civilization, at a period unparalleled in history, in the midst of a raging war, and under all the disadvantages of emigration to a country so remote from the inhabited parts of the continent.
The flour pan in which their daily bread was mixed stood on the rude table side by side with the "prospecting pans," half full of gold washed up from their morning's work; the front windows of the newer tenements looked upon the one single thoroughfare, but the back door opened upon the uncleared wilderness, still haunted by the misshapen bulk of bear or the nightly gliding of catamount.
Years and years after their claim had passed out of the public memory, the Pyncheons were accustomed to consult the Colonel's ancient map, which had been projected while Waldo County was still an unbroken wilderness.
This rose-bush, by a strange chance, has been kept alive in history; but whether it had merely survived out of the stern old wilderness, so long after the fall of the gigantic pines and oaks that originally overshadowed it, or whether, as there is far authority for believing, it had sprung up under the footsteps of the sainted Ann Hutchinson as she entered the prison-door, we shall not take upon us to determine.
As the enraptured Ichabod fancied all this, and as he rolled his great green eyes over the fat meadow lands, the rich fields of wheat, of rye, of buckwheat, and Indian corn, and the orchards burdened with ruddy fruit, which surrounded the warm tenement of Van Tassel, his heart yearned after the damsel who was to inherit these domains, and his imagination expanded with the idea, how they might be readily turned into cash, and the money invested in immense tracts of wild land, and shingle palaces in the wilderness.
It is this decapitated end of the head, also, which is at last elevated out of the water, and retained in that position by the enormous cutting tackles, whose hempen combinations, on one side, make quite a wilderness of ropes in that quarter.