- fabric woven from flax yarns.
- Often linens. bedding, tablecloths, shirts, etc., made of linen cloth or a more common substitute, as cotton.
- yarn made of flax fiber.
- thread made of flax yarns.
- made of linen: a linen jacket.
- wash one's dirty linen in public, to discuss in public one's private scandals, disagreements, or difficulties.
Origin of linen
Examples from the Web for linen
Davis jumped over a 4-foot porch wall and ran into a house, where he and others crammed themselves into a linen closet.‘Argo’ in the Congo: The Ghosts of the Stanleyville Hostage Crisis
November 23, 2014
The edges of the elegant paper are crackled; the ink bled into the linen weave long ago and has not faded.How Gettysburg Did Not Unlock the Past
September 21, 2014
A linen shirt, for example, is, strictly speaking, not a necessary of life.
The Greeks and Romans lived, I suppose, very comfortably though they had no linen.
Still, traces of her old life—the Glock in her linen closet, for one—linger.This Week’s Hot Reads: Oct. 15, 2012
October 15, 2012
He was naked save for a linen under shirt and pair of woollen drawers.The White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle
Did she wish to say that she was grateful to him for having helped her in recovering the linen?The Dream
"To seek the linen for the new sheets, but it was not ready," she answered glibly.Fair Margaret
H. Rider Haggard
And the linen I shall deposit, in pursuance of your kind hint, cannot be missed.Clarissa, Volume 2 (of 9)
Pick them from the stalks, and squeeze them through a linen bag.Directions for Cookery, in its Various Branches
- a hard-wearing fabric woven from the spun fibres of flax
- (as modifier)a linen tablecloth
- yarn or thread spun from flax fibre
- clothes, sheets, tablecloths, etc, made from linen cloth or from a substitute such as cotton
- See linen paper
Word Origin and History for linen
"cloth from woven flax," early 14c.; earlier as an adjective, "made of flax" (c.1200), from Old English linin (adj.) "made of flax," from lin "flax, linen thread, cloth," from West Germanic *linam (cf. Old Saxon, Old Norse, Old High German lin "flax, linen," German Leinen "linen," Gothic lein "linen cloth"), probably an early borrowing from Latin linum "flax, linen," which, along with Greek linon is from a non-IE language.
Idioms and Phrases with linen
see wash one's dirty linen in public.