desert

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desert

a terrestrial environment in which there is poor soil, climatic extremes of high and low temperatures and low rainfall, and consequently a scarcity of living organisms, all of which must be specially adapted. See XEROPHYTE, METABOLIC WATER.
References in classic literature ?
Just below our encampment flowed a little stream, on the farther side of which is a stony slope, the same down which, twenty years before, I had seen poor Silvestre creeping back after his attempt to reach Solomon's Mines, and beyond that slope begins the waterless desert, covered with a species of karoo shrub.
Here do I sit now, The desert nigh, and yet I am So far still from the desert, Even in naught yet deserted: That is, I'm swallowed down By this the smallest oasis--: --It opened up just yawning, Its loveliest mouth agape, Most sweet-odoured of all mouthlets: Then fell I right in, Right down, right through--in 'mong you, Ye friendly damsels dearly loved
This region, which resembles one of the immeasurable steppes of Asia, has not inaptly been termed "the great American desert.
A desert extended around them, and stretched to the southwest, as far as the eye could reach, rivalling the deserts of Asia and Africa in sterility.
In the first place," said the General, "we cannot march across the deadly desert to the Land of Oz.
Oh," said Dorothy, when the shaggy man had read the sign aloud; "I've seen this desert before, and it's true no one can live who tries to walk upon the sands.
What you do with him in the desert is none of my concern, but I shall not have the blood of a Frenchman on the hands of my tribe on account of another man's quarrel--they would send soldiers here and kill many of my people, and burn our tents and drive away our flocks.
Well, maybe he only wanted to get us back here, and then he'll desert, too.
Some instances of this we met with in the country between Arguna, where we enter the Muscovite dominions, and a city of Tartars and Russians together, called Nortziousky, in which is a continued desert or forest, which cost us twenty days to travel over.
It seemed as though no caravan had ever braved this desert expanse, or it would have left visible traces of its encampments, or the whitened bones of men and animals.
A broad green carpet was unrolling itself upon the desert, while advancing across the carpet was a wonderful procession that made the girl open her eyes in amazement as she gazed.
My name," replied the Woman, "is Truth; and I live in the desert in order to be near my worshippers when they are driven from among their fellows.