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dent1

[dent]
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noun
  1. a hollow or depression in a surface, as from a blow.
  2. a noticeable effect, especially of reduction: to leave a dent in one's savings; a dent in one's pride.
verb (used with object)
  1. to make a dent in or on; indent: The impact dented the car's fender.
  2. to have the effect of reducing or slightly injuring: The caustic remark dented his ego.
verb (used without object)
  1. to show dents; become indented: Tin dents more easily than steel.
  2. to sink in, making a dent: Nails dent into metal.
Idioms
  1. make a dent, Informal. to cause a person to take heed; make an impression: The doctor told him to stop smoking, but it didn't make a dent.
  2. make a dent in, to show initial progress; pass an initial stage of (work, thought, solving a problem, etc.): I haven't even made a dent in this pile of work.

Origin of dent1

1250–1300; Middle English dente, variant of dint
Related formsun·dent·ed, adjective

dent2

[dent]
noun
  1. a toothlike projection, as a tooth of a gearwheel.
  2. Textiles. the space between two wires through which the warp ends are drawn in the reed of a loom.

Origin of dent2

1545–55; < Middle French < Latin dent- (stem of dēns) tooth

dent.

  1. dental.
  2. dentist.
  3. dentistry.

dent-

  1. variant of denti- before a vowel: dentin.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for dent

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • "Well, I'll see you again when necessary," the stranger called to Mr. Dent.

  • Frank wondered at his uncle's caution, for Mr. Dent was not usually nervous.

  • Mr. Dent had received a visitor, and Frank determined to find out who it was.

  • But when they spoke of Frank's uncle, Mr. Dent, it must be they meant our Frank.

  • George glanced at the dent in the side panel of the station wagon.

    The Hohokam Dig

    Theodore Pratt


British Dictionary definitions for dent

dent1

noun
  1. a hollow or dip in a surface, as one made by pressure or a blow
  2. an appreciable effect, esp of lesseninga dent in our resources
verb
  1. to impress or be impressed with a dent or dents

Word Origin

C13 (in the sense: a stroke, blow): variant of dint

dent2

noun
  1. a toothlike protuberance, esp the tooth of a sprocket or gearwheel
  2. textiles the space between two wires in a loom through which a warp thread is drawn

Word Origin

C16: from French: tooth

dent.

abbreviation for
  1. dental
  2. dentistry
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

Word Origin and History for dent

n.

early 14c., "a strike or blow," dialectal variant of Middle English dint (q.v.); sense of "indentation" first recorded 1560s, apparently influenced by indent.

v.

late 14c., from dent (n.). Related: Dented; denting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

dent in Medicine

dent-

pref.
  1. Variant ofdenti-

Idioms and Phrases with dent

dent

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.