[lawg-jam, log-]
  1. an immovable pileup or tangle of logs, as in a river, causing a blockage.
  2. any blockage or massive accumulation: a logjam of bills before Congress.

Origin of logjam

First recorded in 1880–85; log1 + jam1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for log jam

log jam

noun mainly US and Canadian
  1. blockage caused by the crowding together of a number of logs floating in a river
  2. a deadlock; standstill
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 log jam



also log-jam, "congestion of logs on a river," by 1851, American English; see log (n.1) + jam (v.). The figurative sense is by 1890.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper