Definition of wilderness in English:

wilderness

Line breaks: wil¦der|ness
Pronunciation: /ˈwɪldənɪs
 
/

noun

[usually in singular]
1An uncultivated, uninhabited, and inhospitable region.
More example sentences
  • Ahead is a barren land of lochans and beautifully-ridged mountains rising steeply from an uninhabited wilderness.
  • Incredibly, 250 years ago the Lake District was seen as an ugly and inhospitable wilderness.
  • I saw sequoias as tall and straight as skyscrapers, celestial waterfalls and a wilderness stretching to unseen horizons.
Synonyms
wilds, wastes, uninhabited region, inhospitable region, uncultivated region, badlands; jungle; desert; South Africanbundu
1.1A neglected or abandoned area: the garden had become a wilderness of weeds and bushes
More example sentences
  • Ponies play a crucial role in the area's ecology by eating vast amounts of vegetation and preventing the landscape turning into a wilderness.
  • To the right is a wilderness, abandoned to brambles, ground elder, bindweed and buddleia.
  • A lot of farmers went out of business, some of the more marginal farming areas reverted to wilderness.
Synonyms
wasteland, neglected area, abandoned area, no-man's-land
1.2A position of disfavour, especially in a political context: the man who led the Labour Party out of the wilderness [as modifier]: his wilderness years
More example sentences
  • In this capacity he was given charge only of the Royal Navy, a position that, after ten years in the political wilderness, he was content to accept.
  • And, if we don't send that message, I fear that we will be in the political wilderness for a long time.
  • Churchill spent most of the 1930s in the political wilderness opposing the disastrous appeasement of Hitler.

Origin

Old English wildēornes 'land inhabited only by wild animals', from wild dēor 'wild deer' + -ness.

Phrases

a voice in the wilderness

An unheeded advocate of reform (see Matt. 3:3 etc.).
More example sentences
  • ‘We can achieve things with that approach but we need one united voice otherwise we are a voice in the wilderness,’ Mr Daly added.
  • Wesbury is chief economist at GKST, and has been a voice in the wilderness for the past couple of years, pointing out the undercurrent of strength in the domestic U.S. Economy.
  • Time will tell whether Spurlock's capable of arriving at conclusions rather than telegraphing them in advance, but for now, he's a voice in the wilderness.

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