[tuhn-druh, too n-]
- one of the vast, nearly level, treeless plains of the arctic regions of Europe, Asia, and North America.
Origin of tundra
1835–45; < Russian túndra < Lappish; compare Kola Lappish tūndar flat elevated area
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for tundra
Hold the Dark is set in the Alaskan wilderness, in an isolated village at the lip of the tundra.Compliments Are Nice, but Enough With the Cormac McCarthy Comparisons
October 21, 2014
The emissions of frozen CO2 and the tundra around the Arctic Ocean have already begun as it thaws.Al Gore Warms Up
December 9, 2009
The snow was sifting over the tundra in icy gusts from the westward.The Trail of a Sourdough
May Kellogg Sullivan
Now the snow had almost all gone from the mountains and the tundra.
He likes to fight all the little folks of the tundra and sea because he is so big.
Would it be in the tall mountains, or on the tundra, or out on the roof of the sea?
He went wandering all over the tundra, looking for something to eat.
- a vast treeless zone lying between the ice cap and the timberline of North America and Eurasia and having a permanently frozen subsoil
- (as modifier)tundra vegetation
C19: from Russian, from Lapp tundar hill; related to Finnish tunturi treeless hill
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for tundra
an Arctic steppe, 1841, from Russian tundra, from Lappish tundar "elevated wasteland."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- A cold, treeless, usually lowland area of far northern regions. The lower strata of soil of tundras are permanently frozen, but in summer the top layer of soil thaws and can support low-growing mosses, lichens, grasses, and small shrubs.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
There are no trees on the tundra: the vegetation is primarily lichens and mosses.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.