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View synonyms for pen

pen

1

[ pen ]

noun

  1. any of various instruments for writing or drawing with ink or a similar substance.
  2. a detachable metal penpoint, filled by dipping or with a quill; nib.
  3. such a penpoint with its penholder.
  4. the pen as the instrument of writing or authorship:

    The pen is mightier than the sword.

  5. a person's style or quality of writing:

    He writes with a witty, incisive pen.

  6. a writer:

    I leave this story to abler pens.

  7. the profession of writing:

    a master of the pen.

  8. a pen-shaped device having a cartridge filled with a drug or medication:

    an insulin pen with disposable needles.

  9. Computers. stylus ( def 3 ).
  10. Ornithology.
  11. something resembling or suggesting a feather or quill.
  12. Zoology. an internal, corneous or chitinous, feather-shaped structure in certain cephalopods, as the squid.


verb (used with object)

, penned, pen·ning.
  1. to write with or as with a pen; put down in writing:

    to pen an essay.

  2. to draw with or as with a pen:

    to pen a sketch.

pen

2

[ pen ]

noun

  1. a small enclosure for domestic animals.
  2. animals so enclosed:

    We have a pen of twenty sheep.

  3. an enclosure used for confinement or safekeeping:

    We have built several pens to hold our harvest of corn.

  4. a dock having a protective concrete structure overhead, used to service and repair submarines.

verb (used with object)

, penned or pent, pen·ning.
  1. to confine in or as in a pen.

pen

3

[ pen ]

pen

4

[ pen ]

noun

  1. a female swan.

pen-

5
  1. variant of pene- before a vowel:

    penannular.

Pen.

6
or pen.

abbreviation for

  1. peninsula.

P.E.N.

7

abbreviation for

  1. International Association of Poets, Playwrights, Editors, Essayists, and Novelists.

PEN

1

/ pɛn /

acronym for

  1. International Association of Poets, Playwrights, Editors, Essayists, and Novelists


Pen.

2

abbreviation for

  1. Peninsula

pen

3

/ pɛn /

noun

  1. a female swan

pen

4

/ pɛn /

noun

  1. informal.
    short for penitentiary

pen

5

/ pɛn /

noun

  1. an enclosure in which domestic animals are kept

    sheep pen

  2. any place of confinement
  3. a dock for servicing submarines, esp one having a bombproof roof

verb

  1. tr to enclose or keep in a pen

pen

6

/ pɛn /

noun

  1. an implement for writing or drawing using ink, formerly consisting of a sharpened and split quill, and now of a metal nib attached to a holder See also ballpoint fountain pen
  2. the writing end of such an implement; nib
  3. style of writing
  4. the pen
    1. writing as an occupation
    2. the written word

      the pen is mightier than the sword

  5. the long horny internal shell of a squid

verb

  1. tr to write or compose
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Other Words From

  • pen·like adjective
  • pen·ner noun
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Word History and Origins

Origin of pen1

First recorded in 1250–1300; Middle English penn(e), from Old French penne “pen, feather,” from Late Latin penna “pen,” from Latin penna, pinna “feather, wing”

Origin of pen2

First recorded before 1000; (noun) Middle English penne, Old English penn (in compounds); perhaps akin to pin; (verb) Middle English pennen, derivative of the noun

Origin of pen3

An Americanism dating back to 1880–85; shortened form

Origin of pen4

First recorded in 1540–50; origin uncertain
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Word History and Origins

Origin of pen1

C16: of unknown origin

Origin of pen2

Old English penn, perhaps related to pin

Origin of pen3

Old English pinne, from Late Latin penna (quill) pen, from Latin: feather
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Idioms and Phrases

see slip of the lip (pen) .
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Example Sentences

Storey said Wright often returned applications “dripping in red pen.”

One industry executive complained that Wright returned unapproved applications “dripping in red pen.”

So, I had a pen and a pencil and started scribbling and drawing, and I felt good about it.

Artists would use pen names and scrawl them across subway cars, walls, shops, and office buildings.

When you are firing out at night, the red tracers go out into the blackness as if you were drawing with a light pen.

Squinty, several times, looked at the hole under the pen, by which he had once gotten out.

Several times after this the boy and his sisters came to look down into the pig pen.

She also practises etching, pen-and-ink drawing, as well as crayon and water-color sketching.

And right after that, some nice sour milk would come splashing down into the trough of the pen.

Then the boy lifted out the comical little pig, and Squinty found himself inside a large box, very much like the pen at home.

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Related Words

Definitions and idiom definitions from Dictionary.com Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

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