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[lahyn] /laɪn/
verb (used with object), lined, lining.
to cover the inner side or surface of:
to line the coat with blue silk.
to serve to cover:
Velvet draperies lined the walls of the room.
to furnish or fill:
to line shelves with provisions.
to reinforce the back of a book with glued fabric, paper, vellum, etc.
a thickness of glue, as between two veneers in a sheet of plywood.
line one's pockets, to make much money, especially in an illegal or questionable way.
Origin of line2
1350-1400; Middle English lynen, derivative of line linen, flax, Old English līn < Latin līnum flax


[pok-it] /ˈpɒk ɪt/
a shaped piece of fabric attached inside or outside a garment and forming a pouch used especially for carrying small articles.
a bag or pouch.
means; financial resources:
a selection of gifts to fit every pocket.
any pouchlike receptacle, compartment, hollow, or cavity.
an envelope, receptacle, etc., usually of heavy paper and open at one end, used for storing or preserving photographs, stamps, phonograph records, etc.:
Each album has 12 pockets.
a recess, as in a wall, for receiving a sliding door, sash weights, etc.
any isolated group, area, element, etc., contrasted, as in status or condition, with a surrounding element or group:
pockets of resistance; a pocket of poverty in the central city.
  1. a small orebody or mass of ore, frequently isolated.
  2. a bin for ore or rock storage.
  3. a raise or small slope fitted with chute gates.
Billiards, Pool. any of the pouches or bags at the corners and sides of the table.
a position in which a competitor in a race is so hemmed in by others that his or her progress is impeded.
Football. the area from which a quarterback throws a pass, usually a short distance behind the line of scrimmage and protected by a wall of blockers.
Bowling. the space between the headpin and the pin next behind to the left or right, taken as the target for a strike.
Baseball. the deepest part of a mitt or glove, roughly in the area around the center of the palm, where most balls are caught.
Nautical. a holder consisting of a strip of sailcloth sewed to a sail, and containing a thin wooden batten that stiffens the leech of the sail.
Anatomy. any saclike cavity in the body:
a pus pocket.
an English unit of weight for hops equivalent to 168 pounds (76.4 kg).
small enough or suitable for carrying in the pocket:
a pocket watch.
relatively small; smaller than usual:
a pocket war; a pocket country.
verb (used with object)
to put into one's pocket:
to pocket one's keys.
to take possession of as one's own, often dishonestly:
to pocket public funds.
to submit to or endure without protest or open resentment:
to pocket an insult.
to conceal or suppress:
to pocket one's pride.
to enclose or confine in or as if in a pocket:
The town was pocketed in a small valley.
Billiards, Pool. to drive (a ball) into a pocket.
to hem in (a contestant) so as to impede progress, as in racing.
in one's pocket, in one's possession; under one's influence:
He has the audience in his pocket.
line one's pockets, to profit, especially at the expense of others:
While millions were fighting and dying, the profiteers were lining their pockets.
out of pocket,
  1. having suffered a financial loss; poorer:
    He had made unwise land purchases, and found himself several thousand dollars out of pocket.
  2. lacking money.
  3. Informal. not available; unreachable:
    I'll be out of pocket all afternoon.
1250-1300; Middle English poket < Old North French (Picard) poquet (Old French pochet, pochette), diminutive of poque < Middle Dutch poke poke2; see -et
Related forms
pocketless, adjective
pocketlike, adjective
unpocket, verb (used with object)
21. steal, pilfer, appropriate, filch. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for line one's pockets


a narrow continuous mark, as one made by a pencil, pen, or brush across a surface
such a mark cut into or raised from a surface
a thin indented mark or wrinkle
a straight or curved continuous trace having no breadth that is produced by a moving point
  1. any straight one-dimensional geometrical element whose identity is determined by two points. A line segment lies between any two points on a line
  2. a set of points (x, y) that satisfies the equation y = mx + c, where m is the gradient and c is the intercept with the y-axis
a border or boundary: the county line
  1. a white or coloured band indicating a boundary or division on a field, track, etc
  2. a mark or imaginary mark at which a race begins or ends
(American football)
  1. See line of scrimmage
  2. the players arranged in a row on either side of the line of scrimmage at the start of each play
a specified point of change or limit: the dividing line between sanity and madness
  1. the edge or contour of a shape, as in sculpture or architecture, or a mark on a painting, drawing, etc, defining or suggesting this
  2. the sum or type of such contours or marks, characteristic of a style or design: the line of a draughtsman, the line of a building
anything long, flexible, and thin, such as a wire or string: a washing line, a fishing line
a telephone connection: a direct line to New York
  1. a conducting wire, cable, or circuit for making connections between pieces of electrical apparatus, such as a cable for electric-power transmission, telecommunications, etc
  2. (as modifier): the line voltage
a system of travel or transportation, esp over agreed routes: a shipping line
a company operating such a system
a route between two points on a railway
(mainly Brit)
  1. a railway track, including the roadbed, sleepers, etc
  2. one of the rails of such a track
(NZ) a roadway usually in a rural area
a course or direction of movement or advance: the line of flight of a bullet
a course or method of action, behaviour, etc: take a new line with him
a policy or prescribed course of action or way of thinking (often in the phrases bring or come into line)
a field of study, interest, occupation, trade, or profession: this book is in your line
alignment; true (esp in the phrases in line, out of line)
one kind of product or article: a nice line in hats
(NZ) a collection of bales of wool all of the one type
a row of persons or things: a line of cakes on the conveyor belt
a chronological or ancestral series, esp of people: a line of prime ministers
a row of words printed or written across a page or column
a unit of verse consisting of the number of feet appropriate to the metre being used and written or printed with the words in a single row
a short letter; note: just a line to say thank you
a piece of useful information or hint about something: give me a line on his work
one of a number of narrow horizontal bands forming a television picture
(physics) a narrow band in an electromagnetic spectrum, resulting from a transition in an atom, ion, or molecule of a gas or plasma
  1. any of the five horizontal marks that make up the stave Compare space (sense 10)
  2. the musical part or melody notated on one such set
  3. a discernible shape formed by sequences of notes or musical sounds: a meandering melodic line
  4. (in polyphonic music) a set of staves that are held together with a bracket or brace
a unit of magnetic flux equal to 1 maxwell
a defensive or fortified position, esp one that marks the most forward position in war or a national boundary: the front line
line ahead, line abreast, a formation adopted by a naval unit for manoeuvring
a formation adopted by a body or a number of military units when drawn up abreast
the combatant forces of certain armies and navies, excluding supporting arms
(fencing) one of four divisions of the target on a fencer's body, considered as areas to which specific attacks are made
the scent left by a fox
  1. the equator (esp in the phrase crossing the line)
  2. any circle or arc on the terrestrial or celestial sphere
the amount of insurance written by an underwriter for a particular risk
(US & Canadian) a line of people, vehicles, etc, waiting for something Also called (in Britain and certain other countries) queue
(slang) a portion of a powdered drug for snorting
(slang) something said for effect, esp to solicit for money, sex, etc: he gave me his usual line
above the line
  1. (accounting) denoting entries above a horizontal line on a profit and loss account, separating those that establish the profit or loss from those that show how the profit is distributed
  2. denoting revenue transactions rather than capital transactions in a nation's accounts
  3. (marketing) expenditure on media advertising through an agency, rather than internally arranged advertising, such as direct mail, free samples, etc
  4. (bridge) denoting bonus points, marked above the horizontal line on the score card
below the line
  1. (accounting) denoting entries below a horizontal line on a profit and loss account, separating those that establish the profit or loss from those that show how the profit is distributed
  2. denoting capital transactions rather than revenue transactions in a nation's accounts
  3. (marketing) denoting expenditure on advertising by other means than the traditional media, such as the provision of free gifts, special displays, direct mailshots, etc
  4. (bridge) denoting points scored towards game and rubber, marked below the horizontal line on the score card
all along the line
  1. at every stage in a series
  2. in every detail
(Irish & Austral, informal) do a line, to associate (with a person of the opposite sex) regularly; go out (with): he is doing a line with her
draw the line, to reasonably object (to) or set a limit (on): her father draws the line at her coming in after midnight
(informal) get a line on, to obtain information about
hold the line
  1. to keep a telephone line open
  2. (football) to prevent the opponents from taking the ball forward
  3. (of soldiers) to keep formation, as when under fire
in line for, in the running for; a candidate for: he's in line for a directorship
in line with, conforming to
in the line of duty, as a necessary and usually undesired part of the performance of one's responsibilities
lay on the line, put on the line
  1. to pay money
  2. to speak frankly and directly
  3. to risk (one's career, reputation, etc) on something
(informal) shoot a line, to try to create a false image, as by boasting or exaggerating
step out of line, to fail to conform to expected standards, attitudes, etc
toe the line, to conform to expected standards, attitudes, etc
(transitive) to mark with a line or lines
(transitive) to draw or represent with a line or lines
(transitive) to be or put as a border to: tulips lined the lawns
to place in or form a row, series, or alignment
See also lines, line-up
Derived Forms
linable, lineable, adjective
lined, adjective
linelike, adjective
liny, liney, adjective
Word Origin
C13: partly from Old French ligne, ultimately from Latin līnea, n use of līneus flaxen, from līnum flax; partly from Old English līn, ultimately also from Latin līnum flax


verb (transitive)
to attach an inside covering to (a garment, curtain, etc), as for protection, to hide the seaming, or so that it should hang well
to cover or fit the inside of: to line the walls with books
to fill plentifully: a purse lined with money
to reinforce the back of (a book) with fabric, paper, etc
Word Origin
C14: ultimately from Latin līnum flax, since linings were often made of linen


a small bag or pouch in a garment for carrying small articles, money, etc
any bag or pouch or anything resembling this
  1. a cavity or hollow in the earth, etc, such as one containing gold or other ore
  2. the ore in such a place
a small enclosed or isolated area: a pocket of resistance
(billiards, snooker) any of the six holes with pouches or nets let into the corners and sides of a billiard table
a position in a race in which a competitor is hemmed in
(Australian rules football) a player in one of two side positions at the ends of the ground: back pocket, forward pocket
(South African) a bag or sack of vegetables or fruit
in one's pocket, under one's control
in pocket, having made a profit, as after a transaction
(rugby) in the pocket, (of a fly half) in an attacking position slightly further back from play than normal, making himself available for a drop goal attempt
out of pocket, having made a loss, as after a transaction
line one's pockets, to make money, esp by dishonesty when in a position of trust
(modifier) suitable for fitting in a pocket; small: a pocket edition
(modifier) (poker, slang) denoting a pair formed from the two private cards dealt to a player in a game of Texas hold 'em: pocket queens
verb (transitive) -ets, -eting, -eted
to put into one's pocket
to take surreptitiously or unlawfully; steal
(usually passive) to enclose or confine in or as if in a pocket
to receive (an insult, injury, etc) without retaliating
to conceal or keep back (feelings): he pocketed his pride and accepted help
(billiards, snooker) to drive (a ball) into a pocket
(US) (esp of the President) to retain (a bill) without acting on it in order to prevent it from becoming law See also pocket veto
to hem in (an opponent), as in racing
Derived Forms
pocketable, adjective
pocketless, adjective
Word Origin
C15: from Anglo-Norman poket a little bag, from poque bag, from Middle Dutch pokepoke², bag; related to French poche pocket
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 line one's pockets



mid-14c., pokete, "bag, pouch, small sack," from Anglo-French pokete (13c.), diminutive of Old North French poque "bag" (Old French pouche), from a Germanic source akin to Frankish *pokka "bag," from Proto-Germanic *puk- (see poke (n.)).

Meaning "small bag worn on the person, especially one sewn into a garment" is from early 15c. Sense in billiards is from 1754. Mining sense is attested from 1850; military sense of "area held by troops surrounded by the enemy" is from 1918; the general sense of "small area different than its surroundings" (1926) apparently was extended from the military use. Figuratively, "one's money" (conceived as being kept in a pocket) is from 1717. Pope Pokett (late 15c.) was figurative of the greedy and corrupt Church.



late 14c., "to tie with a cord," from line (n.). Meaning "to mark or mark off with lines" is from mid-15c. Sense of "to arrange in a line" is from 1640s; that of "to join a line" is by 1773. To line up "form a line" is attested by 1889, in U.S. football.



1580s, "to place in a pocket" (often with implications of dishonesty), from pocket (n.). From the earliest use often figurative. Meaning "to form pockets" is from c.1600. Related: Pocketed; pocketing.



1610s, "of or pertaining to or meant for a pocket," from pocket (n.). Pocket-knife is first recorded 1727; pocket-money is attested from 1630s. Often merely implying a small-sized version of something, e.g. of warships, from 1930, and cf. Pocket Venus "beautiful, small woman," attested from 1808. Pocket veto attested from 1842, American English.

The "pocket veto" can operate only in the case of bills sent to the President within ten days of Congressional adjournment. If he retain such a bill (figuratively, in his pocket) neither giving it his sanction by signing it, nor withholding his sanction in returning it to Congress, the bill is defeated. The President is not bound to give reasons for defeating a bill by a pocket veto which he has not had at least ten days to consider. In a regular veto he is bound to give such reasons. [James Albert Woodburn, "The American Republic and its Government," Putnam's, 1903]



a Middle English merger of Old English line "cable, rope; series, row, row of letters; rule, direction," and Old French ligne "guideline, cord, string; lineage, descent;" both from Latin linea "linen thread, string, line," from phrase linea restis "linen cord," from fem. of lineus (adj.) "of linen," from linum "linen" (see linen).

Oldest sense is "rope, cord, string;" extended late 14c. to "a thread-like mark" (from sense "cord used by builders for making things level," mid-14c.), also "track, course, direction." Sense of "things or people arranged in a straight line" is from 1550s. That of "cord bearing hooks used in fishing" is from c.1300. Meaning "one's occupation, branch of business" is from 1630s, probably from misunderstood KJV translation of 2 Cor. x:16, "And not to boast in another mans line of things made ready to our hand," where line translates Greek kanon, literally "measuring rod." Meaning "class of goods in stock" is from 1834. Meaning "telegraph wire" is from 1847 (later "telephone wire").

Meaning "policy or set of policies of a political faction" is 1892, American English, from notion of a procession of followers; this is the sense in party line. In British army, the Line (1802) is the regular, numbered troops, as distinguished from guards and auxiliaries. In the Navy (1704, e.g. ship of the line) it refers to the battle line. Lines "words of an actor's part" is from 1882. Lines of communication were originally transverse trenches in siegeworks.



"to cover the inner side of," late 14c., from Old English lin "linen cloth" (see linen). Linen was frequently used in the Middle Ages as a second layer of material on the inner side of a garment. Related: Lined; lining.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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line one's pockets in Medicine

line (līn)

  1. The path traced by a moving point.

  2. A thin continuous mark, as that made by a pen, pencil, or brush applied to a surface.

  3. A crease in the skin, especially on the face; a wrinkle.

  4. In anatomy, a long narrow mark, strip, or streak distinguished from adjacent tissue by color, texture, or elevation.

  5. A real or imaginary mark positioned in relation to fixed points of reference.

  6. A border, boundary, or demarcation.

  7. A contour or an outline.

  8. A mark used to define a shape or represent a contour.

  9. Any of the marks that make up the formal design of a picture.

  10. A cable, rope, string, cord or wire.

  11. A general method, manner, or course of procedure.

  12. A manner or course of procedure determined by a specified factor.

  13. An official or prescribed policy.

  14. Ancestry or lineage.

  15. A series of persons, especially from one family, who succeed each other.

pocket pock·et (pŏk'ĭt)

  1. In anatomy, a cul-de-sac or pouchlike cavity.

  2. A diseased space between the inflamed gum and the surface of a tooth.

  3. A collection of pus in a nearly closed sac.

v. pock·et·ed, pock·et·ing, pock·ets
  1. To enclose within a confined space.

  2. To approach the surface at a localized spot, as with the thinned out wall of an abscess which is about to rupture.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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line one's pockets in Science
A geometric figure formed by a point moving in a fixed direction and in the reverse direction. The intersection of two planes is a line. ◇ The part of a line that lies between two points on the line is called a line segment.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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line one's pockets in Culture

line definition

A set of points that have one dimension — length — but no width or height. (See coordinates.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for line one's pockets



  1. One's way of talking, esp when being persuasive or self-aggrandizing; spiel: of what in a later generation would have been termed her ''line''/ You've got some line (1903+)
  2. One's occupation, business, etc; racket: What's my line? Herring in brine (1655+)
  3. A musical solo or figure, esp personal and innovative: Coasters talk of ''lines,'' not licks, breaks, or riffs (1930s+ Jazz musicians)
  4. A bookmaker's odds on a sports event: Baseball, basketball, and hockey lines are available on the day or night of the games (1970s+ Gambling)
  5. A dose of cocaine, usually formed into a thin line to be nasally ingested (1980+ Narcotics)


  1. To hit the ball in a line drive (1892+ Baseball)
  2. Take cocaine: They lined twice last night, no wonder they're tired

Related Terms

someone's ass is on the line, the bottom line, chow line, hard line, hot line, in line, in line for, lay it on the line, main line, on line, on the line, out of line, punch line, put one's ass on the line, redline, shoot someone a line, stag line, toe the mark

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with line one's pockets

line one's pockets

Accept a bribe or other illicit payment, as in The mayor and his cronies found dozens of ways to line their pockets. This expression dates from the mid-1500s, when it was also put as line one's purse.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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