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playa

[ plahy-uh ]
/ ˈplaɪ ə /
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noun
Western U.S. the sandy, salty, or mud-caked flat floor of a desert basin having interior drainage, usually occupied by a shallow lake during or after prolonged, heavy rains.
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Question 1 of 6
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Compare dry lake.

Origin of playa

1850–55, Americanism;<Spanish: shore <Late Latin plagia;see plage
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

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British Dictionary definitions for playa

playa
/ (ˈplɑːjə, Spanish ˈplaja) /

noun
(in the US) a temporary lake, or its dry often salty bed, in a desert basin

Word Origin for playa

Spanish: shore, from Late Latin plagia, from Greek plagios slanting, from plagos side; compare French plage beach
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

Scientific definitions for playa

playa
[ plīə ]

A dry lake bed at the bottom of a desert basin, sometimes temporarily covered with water. Playas have no vegetation and are among the flattest geographical features in the world. Also called sink
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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