from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A bed of loose sand mixed with water forming a soft shifting mass that yields easily to pressure and tends to engulf any object resting on its surface.
- n. A place or situation into which entry can be swift and sudden but from which extrication can be difficult or impossible. Often used in the plural: "This theory of the future entrapped [them] in the quicksands of Vietnam” ( Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.)
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Wet sand that things readily sink in, often found near rivers or coasts
- n. Anything that pulls one down or buries one metaphorically
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Sand easily moved or readily yielding to pressure; especially, a deep mass of loose or moving sand mixed with water, sometimes found at the mouth of a river or along some coasts, and very dangerous, from the difficulty of extricating a person who begins sinking into it.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A movable sand-bank in a sea, lake, or river; a large mass of loose or moving sand mixed with water formed on many sea-coasts, at the mouths and in the channels of rivers, etc., sometimes dangerous to vessels, and especially to travelers.
- To catch in a quicksand.
- To cover with quicksands: as, a quicksanded coast.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a treacherous situation that tends to entrap and destroy
- n. a pit filled with loose wet sand into which objects are sucked down
Middle English quyksond, living sand : quick, quyk, living; see quick + sand, sond, sand; see sand.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English quyksande, from Old English cwecesand ("quicksand"), from Proto-Germanic *kwikwaz (“living, active”) + Proto-Germanic *samdaz, *samdan (“sand”), equivalent to quick (“living”) + sand. Cognate with Dutch kwikzand ("quicksand"), German Quicksand ("quicksand"), Icelandic kwiksandur, kviksyndi ("quicksand"). More at quick, sand. (Wiktionary)