Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[fid] /fɪd/
noun, Nautical.
a stout bar of wood or metal placed across a lower spar so as to support a higher one.
a stout bar used to hold a running bowsprit in its extended position.
a wooden or metal pin for parting strands of a rope.
a bar or pin used as a key or toggle.
Origin of fid
First recorded in 1605-15; origin uncertain




a combining form meaning “divided,” “lobed,” occurring in adjectives borrowed from Latin (bifid); on this model, used in the formation of compound words (pinnatifid).
< Latin -fidus divided, equivalent to -fid- (variant stem of findere to split) + -us adj. suffix Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for fid
Historical Examples
  • He accordingly shut the great doors, and put the fid into the staple.

  • Heeling is the square part of the spar through which the fid hole is cut.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • fid immediately handed a brace of pistols and a dirk to True Blue, and together they rushed aft.

    True Blue W.H.G. Kingston
  • The rope which fid secured made the task comparatively, easy.

    True Blue W.H.G. Kingston
  • Dr. Reasono took a fid, and with its end he traced all the desired objects with great readiness and skill.

    The Monikins J. Fenimore Cooper
  • The doors cannot be opened again until the fid is taken out.

  • To prevent his companions from seizing his weapons, fid drew them from his pocket and bolted off with them round the deck.

    True Blue W.H.G. Kingston
  • The fid should always be fastened to the cross-trees or trestle-trees, by a lanyard.

    The Seaman's Friend Richard Henry Dana
  • No Gipples appeared, and fid felt sure that he must have slipped purposely overboard.

    True Blue W.H.G. Kingston
  • Duodecim′fid, divided into twelve parts; Duodec′imo, formed of sheets folded so as to make twelve leaves.

British Dictionary definitions for fid


noun (nautical)
a spike for separating strands of rope in splicing
a wooden or metal bar for supporting the heel of a topmast
Word Origin
C17: of unknown origin


combining form
divided into parts or lobes: bifid, pinnatifid
Word Origin
from Latin -fidus, from findere to split
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for fid


word-forming element meaning "split, divided into parts," from Latin -fidus, related to findere "to split" (see fissure).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for fid

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for fid

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for fid