[ lint ]
/ lɪnt /


minute shreds or ravelings of yarn; bits of thread.
staple cotton fiber used to make yarn.
cotton waste produced by the ginning process.
a soft material for dressing wounds, procured by scraping or otherwise treating linen cloth.

Nearby words

  1. linseed meal,
  2. linseed oil,
  3. linsey,
  4. linsey-woolsey,
  5. linstock,
  6. lintel,
  7. linter,
  8. lintie,
  9. linton,
  10. linton, ralph

Origin of lint

1325–75; Middle English, variant of linnet; compare Middle French linette linseed, Old English līnet- flax (or flax-field) in līnetwige lintwhite

Related formslint·less, adjectivede·lint, verb (used with object) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for lint

British Dictionary definitions for lint


/ (lɪnt) /


an absorbent cotton or linen fabric with the nap raised on one side, used to dress wounds, etc
shreds of fibre, yarn, etc
mainly US staple fibre for making cotton yarn
Derived Formslinty, adjective

Word Origin for lint

C14: probably from Latin linteus made of linen, from līnum flax

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 lint



late 14c., "flax prepared for spinning," also "refuse of flax used as kindling," somehow from the source of Old English lin "flax" (see linen), perhaps from or by influence of Middle French linette "grain of flax," diminutive of lin "flax," from Latin linum "flax, linen;" Klein suggests from Latin linteum "linen cloth," neuter of adjective linteus. Later "flax refuse used as tinder or for dressing wounds" (c.1400). Still used for "flax" in Scotland in Burns' time. Applied in American English to stray cotton fluff.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper