Definition of jungle in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈjəNGɡəl/


1An area of land overgrown with dense forest and tangled vegetation, typically in the tropics: we set off into the jungle the lakes are hidden in dense jungle
More example sentences
  • Such terrain includes cities, jungles, and dense forests, but it also includes open terrain when it is mountainous or broken, affording the enemy numerous hiding places.
  • He fell on top of a colossal butte overlooking a dense jungle.
  • Your guide will lead you through miles of old cane lands, tropical forests, and jungles rich with magnificent scenery.
tropical forest, (tropical) rain forest, wilderness
1.1A wild tangled mass of vegetation or other things: the garden was a jungle of bluebells
More example sentences
  • The tops of the washing machines are covered by a jungle of well-watered pot plants.
  • My carpaccio was passable, but far too sparse and hidden beneath a jungle of foliage.
  • We sit there sometimes, but prefer the front, which is more like a jungle of plants where coffee refills are 10 minutes apart.
1.2A situation or place of bewildering complexity or brutal competitiveness: it’s a jungle out there
More example sentences
  • Perhaps, our urban jungle is just as bewildering for the old man and his daughter.
  • But the European airline industry remains an insane jungle of bizarre and complex rules.
  • I know it's shameless, but the publishing world is a competitive jungle and, hey, you have to grab what chances you can.
complexity, confusion, complication, chaos, mess;
labyrinth, maze, tangle, web
1.3 (also hobo jungle) informalUS A hobo camp.
Example sentences
  • I went to the nearest hobo jungle and smelled something cooking.
  • He thinks wistfully of how he used to hop freights, sleep in culverts, drink white lightning in hobo jungles, take a sash-weight to his competitors, go through the pockets of the recently dead.
2 (also jungle music) A style of dance music incorporating elements of ragga, hip-hop, and hard core and consisting almost exclusively of very fast electronic drum tracks and slower synthesized bass lines, originating in Britain in the early 1990s. Compare with drum and bass.
Example sentences
  • On your old website, you mentioned that you both grew up listening to hip-hop, reggae and jungle.
  • ‘He's been working on free jazz, hip hop, jungle and house,’ he says.
  • Furthermore, his contributions to electronica paved the way for genres such as acid house, deep house, jungle, and drum & bass.


the law of the jungle

The principle that those who are strong and apply ruthless self-interest will be most successful.
Example sentences
  • He viewed the world as one where the law of the jungle prevailed and the strong could kill the weak.
  • Otherwise, we simply have the law of the jungle.
  • His colleagues, who recounted the story, called his decision prudent in a city ruled by the law of the jungle for more than a year.



Example sentences
  • One of the guests has been scuba diving off that jungled shoreline we passed, and on the bottom he found a ship's canon from around Nelson's time.
  • Instead we are moving the mail over distances of hundreds of miles - over jungled mountains and high palmy savannahs - using high-frequency radio.
  • They planned a development of high-rise hotels, the jungled hills denuded and flattened for airstrips, a restaurant built over the fragile coral reefs we had explored all week.


Pronunciation: /ˈjəNGɡlē/
Example sentences
  • As a consequence, the garden has become somewhat jungly.
  • If you want to create a jungly otherworld at the bottom of your garden, then you should definitely go green.
  • The female crooners, the slightly jungly beats, the hip-hop influence, the somewhat pop sensibility; it's all here.


Late 18th century: via Hindi from Sanskrit jāṅgala 'rough and arid (terrain)'.

  • This Hindi word has a root in the Sanskrit for ‘rough and arid’, and in Indian use jungle first meant simply ‘rough, uncultivated ground, wasteland’ rather than ‘land overgrown with dense forest and tangled vegetation’. The law of the jungle is from The Jungle Book (1894) by Rudyard Kipling. In Kipling's book, the law of the jungle is not necessarily selfish: ‘Now this is the Law of the Jungle—as old and as true as the sky…the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack.’ Since the 1920s a concrete jungle has been an unattractive urban area perceived as a harsh, unpleasant environment, where the ‘law of the jungle’ prevails. Blackboard Jungle was the title of the 1954 novel by Evan Hunter about an undisciplined school, filmed the following year.

Words that rhyme with jungle

bungle, fungal

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: jun·gle

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