Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


Land of the sunshine, the deep blue sky, and snow-topped hills!

It seems pleasant to be on land after being on shipboard so many weeks.

"Another tribe is trying to break into our land," he said to himself.

Soon the news of his terrible deed spread throughout the land.

His name was Cup and he too had inherited his land from a hundred other Cups who had gone before.

Knife, however, must promise to leave his land to his son-in-law in case he died.

Mesopotamia, therefore, meant a stretch of land "between the rivers."

The land of Phoenicia had always been a counting-house without a soul.

The Sumerians take possession of the land between the Tigris and the Euphrates.

Mr. Malbone would hardly imagine you had been bred in a Christian land.


Old English land, lond, "ground, soil," also "definite portion of the earth's surface, home region of a person or a people, territory marked by political boundaries," from Proto-Germanic *landom (cf. Old Norse, Old Frisian Dutch, German, Gothic land), from PIE *lendh- "land, heath" (cf. Old Irish land, Middle Welsh llan "an open space," Welsh llan "enclosure, church," Breton lann "heath," source of French lande; Old Church Slavonic ledina "waste land, heath," Czech lada "fallow land").

Etymological evidence and Gothic use indicates the original sense was "a definite portion of the earth's surface owned by an individual or home of a nation." Meaning early extended to "solid surface of the earth," which had been the sense of the root of Modern English earth. Original sense of land in English is now mostly found under country. To take the lay of the land is a nautical expression. In the American English exclamation land's sakes (1846) land is a euphemism for Lord.


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.