[ den ]
/ dɛn /


verb (used with object), denned, den·ning.

to drive or pursue (an animal) into its den.
to kill (an animal) inside its den.

verb (used without object), denned, den·ning.

to live in or as if in a den.

Nearby words

  1. demyelinate,
  2. demyelinating disease,
  3. demyelination,
  4. demystify,
  5. demythologize,
  6. den bosch,
  7. den chief,
  8. den father,
  9. den haag,
  10. den helder

Origin of den

before 1000; Middle English; Old English denn; compare early Dutch denne floor, cave, den, German Tenne floor Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for denning

British Dictionary definitions for denning


/ (ˈdɛnɪŋ) /


Baron Alfred Thompson . 1899–1999, English judge; Master of the Rolls 1962-82


/ (dɛn) /


verb dens, denning or denned

(intr) to live in or as if in a den

Word Origin for den

Old English denn; related to Old High German tenni threshing floor, early Dutch denne low ground, den, cave

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 denning



Old English denn "wild animal's lair," from Proto-Germanic *danjan (cf. Middle Low German denne "lowland, wooded vale, den," Old English denu "valley," Old Frisian dene "down," Old High German tenni, German tenne "threshing floor," from PIE *dan- "low ground"). Sense of "small room" is 1771, originally colloquial.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper