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1. An expanse of scenery that can be seen in a single view: a desert landscape.
2. A picture depicting an expanse of scenery.
3. The branch of art dealing with the representation of natural scenery.
4. The aspect of the land characteristic of a particular region: a bleak New England winter landscape.
5. Grounds that have been landscaped: liked the house especially for its landscape.
6. An extensive mental view; an interior prospect: "They occupy the whole landscape of my thought" (James Thurber).
7. The orientation of a page such that the shorter side runs from top to bottom.
v. land·scaped, land·scap·ing, land·scapes
To adorn or improve (a section of ground) by contouring and by planting flowers, shrubs, or trees.
To arrange grounds aesthetically or maintain grounds as a profession.

[Dutch landschap, from Middle Dutch landscap, region : land, land; see lendh- in Indo-European roots + -scap, state, condition (collective suff.).]

land′scap′er n.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.




  1. The corn is as high as an elephant’s eye and it looks like it’s climbin’ clear up to the sky —Oscar Hammerstein, II, from opening lyric for Oklahoma.
  2. The country lay like an abandoned theatrical backdrop, tarnished and yellow —Beryl Markham
  3. The endless fields glowed like a hearth in firelight —Eudora Welty
  4. A farm … off the road … glittering like a photo in a picture book with its twin silos pointing to heaven like two fat white fingers —Harvey Swados
  5. Fields like squares of a chessboard and trees and houses like dolls’ furniture —Hugh Walpole
  6. The fields shone and seemed to tremble like a veil in the light —Eudora Welty
  7. The fields were like icing sugar —Joyce Cary
  8. The fields [in March] were white as bones and dry as meal —M. J. Farrell
  9. Gardens, crowded with flowers of every rich and beautiful tint, sparkled … like beds of glittering jewels —Charles Dickens
  10. Great spots of light like white wine splash over the Jardins Publiques —Katherine Mansfield
  11. Green hummocks like ancient cannon-balls sprouting grass —Elizabeth Bishop
  12. The land flowed like white silk … flat as a bed sheet and empty as the moon —Frank Ross
  13. Landscape as precise and vibrant as fine writing —Sharon Sheehe Stark
  14. The landscape boiled around her like a pan of beans —Dilys Laing
  15. Landscape … gaunt and bleak like the face of the moon —Donald Seaman
  16. Landscape … like a gray sink —Paul Theroux
  17. The landscape [when it snows] lumps like flour gravy —Lisa Ress
  18. Landscapes … like sorrows, they require some distance —Donald Justice
  19. The landscape was bleak and bereft of color … like a painting in grisaille with its many tints of gray —Barbara Taylor Bradford
  20. The landscape was yellowish and purple, speckled like a leopard skin —Nikos Kazantzakis
  21. The lawn looked as expensive as a velvet carpet woven in one piece —Edith Wharton
  22. The lawns looked artificial, like green excelsior or packing material —Saul Bellow
  23. The lawn, spread out like an immense green towel —Ludwig Bemelmans
  24. Light hits that field, like silk being rubbed the wrong way —John Gunther
  25. The long slope of the park dipped like a length of green stuff with a ceiling cloth of blue and pink smoke high above —Virginia Woolf
  26. Meadows carpeted with buttercups, like slabs of gold in the somber forest —John Fowles
  27. Patches of earth showed through the snow, like ink spots spreading on a sheet of white blotting paper —Edith Wharton
  28. Petals … fell on the grass like spilled paint —Laurie Colwin
  29. Populating the field in dark humps, like elephants moving across savannah, were scores of great round straw bales —Will Weaver
  30. Pretty cubes and loaves of new houses are strewn among the pines, like sugar lumps —Walker Percy
  31. Smooth swelling fields, like waves —Wilbur Daniel Steele
  32. The stony landscape … is full of craters and frozen lights like a moon —Erich Maria Remarque
  33. Swelling smooth fields like pale breasts —Wilbur Daniel Steele
  34. The reeds and willow bushes looked like little islands swaying in the wind —Leo Tolstoy
  35. Vast lawns that extend like sheets of vivid green —Washington Irving

    Irving’s simile was inspired by English park scenery.

  36. The wet countryside glistened and dripped as though it had been freshly scrubbed —Robert Traver
  37. Wet furry fields lay like the stomachs of soft animals bared to the sky —Julia O’Faolain
  38. Wet pine growth reflects the sunlight like steel knitting needles —Walker Percy
  39. When you drive by them [the woods] fast, the crop rows in between spin like spokes on a turning wheel —Alec Wilkinson, New Yorker, August 12, 1985
  40. The whole landscape loomed absolute, as the antique world was once —Sylvia Plath
  41. The whole [valley] was like a broad counterpane, hued in rust and yellow and golden brown —Beryl Markham
Similes Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1988 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
Landscapes were presented to the eye under very different conditions from those on the earth, and also very inferior to them.
In landscapes the painter should give the suggestion of a fairer creation than we know.
The smaller were pictures of still-life and the largest were landscapes. There were about half a dozen portraits.
oh, ever vernal endless landscapes in the soul; in ye, --though long parched by the dead drought of the earthy life, --in ye, men yet may roll, like young horses in new morning clover; and for some few fleeting moments, feel the cool dew of the life immortal on them.
Two panels were entirely hidden under pen-and-ink sketches, Gouache landscapes and Audran engravings, relics of better times and vanished luxury.
Behind the city swept the rotund upland of St Catherine's Hill; further off, landscape beyond landscape, till the horizon was lost in the radiance of the sun hanging above it.
How easily we might walk onward into the opening landscape, absorbed by new pictures and by thoughts fast succeeding each other, until by degrees the recollection of home was crowded out of the mind, all memory obliterated by the tyranny of the present, and we were led in triumph by nature.
Before he had gone far he observed that the landscape was growing more distinct--was brightening.
The further we went the hotter the sun got, and the more rocky and bare, repulsive and dreary the landscape became.
I call to mind a winter landscape in Amsterdam - a flat foreground of waste land, with here and there stacks of timber, like the huts of a camp of some very miserable tribe; the long stretch of the Handelskade; cold, stone-faced quays, with the snow-sprinkled ground and the hard, frozen water of the canal, in which were set ships one behind another with their frosty mooring-ropes hanging slack and their decks idle and deserted, because, as the master stevedore (a gentle, pale person, with a few golden hairs on his chin and a reddened nose) informed me, their cargoes were frozen-in up-country on barges and schuyts.
The sky over them was like a jewelled cup from which the dusk was pouring; the air was crisp with the compelling tang of the sea, and the whole landscape was infused with the subtleties of a sea evening.