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or dean

[deen] /din/
noun, British.
a bare, sandy tract or low sand hill near the sea.
Origin of dene
1815-20; earlier den, in same sense, Middle English (in phrase den and strond); perhaps to be identified with Middle English dene, Old English denu, dænu valley Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for dene
Historical Examples
  • A glade or valley in the wood was called a Dean, dene, Denne, cognate with den.

    The Romance of Names

    Ernest Weekley
  • Captain dene pulled at his moustache as though puzzled how to act.

    Two Little Travellers

    Frances Browne Arthur
  • It was many a long day before she again suggested a visit to dene.

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
  • "Those are the dene fields," said Alicia, following her glance.

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
  • His people lived there for generations—the Lumsdens of dene Compton.

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
  • She remembered her promise one morning and took her up to dene Compton.

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
  • It was not only Clare who was very tired of co-education and dene Compton.

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
  • Roger, her Roger, had come up all the way from dene to play cards with Elsbeth!

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
  • There you'll be at dene, miserable—you will be miserable, Roger?

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
  • No, this is—well, it certainly has something to do with dene, too!

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
British Dictionary definitions for dene


(Brit) a valley, esp one that is narrow and wooded
Word Origin
Old English denu valley; see den


(dialect, mainly Southern English) a sandy stretch of land or dune near the sea
Word Origin
C13: probably related to Old English dūn hill; see down³


/ˈdɛnɪ; ˈdɛneɪ/
plural noun
the North American Indian peoples of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories in Canada. The official body representing them is called the Dene Nation
Word Origin
via French déné, from Athapascan dene people
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
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Word Origin and History for dene

"bare, sandy tract by the sea," late 13c., of uncertain origin, perhaps connected to dune, but the sense difference is difficult.


"small valley," from Old English denu "valley" (see den).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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