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[hohn] /hoʊn/
a whetstone of fine, compact texture for sharpening razors and other cutting tools.
a precision tool with a mechanically rotated abrasive tip, for enlarging holes to precise dimensions.
verb (used with object), honed, honing.
to sharpen on a hone:
to hone a carving knife.
to enlarge or finish (a hole) with a hone.
to make more acute or effective; improve; perfect:
to hone one's skills.
Origin of hone1
before 950; Middle English (noun); Old English hān stone, rock; cognate with Old Norse hein hone; akin to cone
Related forms
honer, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for honer
Historical Examples
  • The Captain brought his weapon up to the salute, and said, "Major, the honer is moine; I'm deloighted to see ye."

    The History of Pendennis William Makepeace Thackeray
  • For nothing at all, your honer: that's just it; but ould Kennyfeck put him up to it.

    Roland Cashel Charles James Lever
  • But his genius won him world praise, and later, honer in his own country.

    Historic Fredericksburg John T. Goolrick
  • "It ain't bein' a crowned head, but it's honer'ble," pleaded the sick man, continuing the conversation.

  • I do, your honer, jist for my wife's mother, ye see; but I live down towards Cash.

British Dictionary definitions for honer


a fine whetstone, esp for sharpening razors
a tool consisting of a number of fine abrasive slips held in a machine head, rotated and reciprocated to impart a smooth finish to cylinder bores, etc
(transitive) to sharpen or polish with or as if with a hone
Usage note
Hone is sometimes wrongly used where home is meant: this device makes it easier to home in on (not hone in on) the target
Word Origin
Old English hān stone; related to Old Norse hein


verb (intransitive) (dialect)
often foll by for or after. to yearn or pine
to moan or grieve
Word Origin
C17: from Old French hogner to growl, probably of Germanic origin; compare Old High German hōnen to revile
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 honer

1826, agent noun from hone (v.); early 14c. as a surname.



"whetstone," Old English han "stone, rock, (boundary) stone," in Middle English "whetstone" (early 14c.), from Proto-Germanic *haino (cf. Old Norse hein "hone"). The verb is 1788, from the noun. Related: Honed; honing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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