earthwork

[ urth-wurk ]
/ ˈɜrθˌwɜrk /

noun

excavation and piling of earth in connection with an engineering operation.
Military. a construction formed chiefly of earth for protection against enemy fire, used in both offensive and defensive operations.
an artistic work that consists of a large-scale alteration or modification of an area of land in a configuration designed by an artist or of an artist's sculptural installation, as in a museum or gallery, of soil, rock, or similar elemental materials.

Origin of earthwork

First recorded in 1625–35; earth + work
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for earthwork

British Dictionary definitions for earthwork

earthwork

/ (ˈɜːθˌwɜːk) /

noun

excavation of earth, as in engineering construction
a fortification made of earth
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 earthwork

earthwork


n.

1630s, from earth + work (n.). In this sense Old English had eorðbyrig; Old English eorðweorc meant "work on the land."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper