[ den-uh m ]
/ ˈdɛn əm /


a heavy, Z-twist, twill cotton for jeans, overalls, and other work and leisure garments.
a similar fabric of finer quality, for covering cushions, furniture, etc.
denims, (used with a plural verb) a garment, especially trousers or overalls, made of denim.

Origin of denim

1685–95; < French: short for serge de Nîmes serge of Nîmes Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for denim

British Dictionary definitions for denim


/ (ˈdɛnɪm) /

noun textiles

  1. a hard-wearing twill-weave cotton fabric used for trousers, work clothes, etc
  2. (as modifier)a denim jacket
  1. a similar lighter fabric used in upholstery
  2. (as modifier)denim cushion covers

Word Origin for denim

C17: from French (serge) de Nîmes (serge) of Nîmes
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 denim



1690s, from French serge de Nîmes "serge from Nîmes," town in southern France. Application to "coarse cotton cloth" is first recorded 1850 in American English. Denims "pants made of denim" recorded from 1868. The place name is Roman Nemausus, said to be ultimately from Gaulish nemo "sanctuary."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper