Idioms

Origin of pin

before 1100; (noun) Middle English pinne, Old English pinn “peg”; cognate with Dutch pin, German Pinne, Old Norse pinni; perhaps frrom Latin pinna “feather, quill” (see pinna); (verb) Middle English pinnen, derivative of the noun
Related formsre·pin, verb (used with object), re·pinned, re·pin·ning.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for pin down (1 of 3)

pin down


verb (tr, adverb)

to force (someone) to make a decision or carry out a promise
to define clearlyhe had a vague suspicion that he couldn't quite pin down
to confine to a placethe fallen tree pinned him down

British Dictionary definitions for pin down (2 of 3)

PIN

/ (pɪn) /

n acronym for

personal identification number: a number used by a holder of a cash card or credit card used in EFTPOS

British Dictionary definitions for pin down (3 of 3)

pin

/ (pɪn) /

noun

verb pins, pinning or pinned (tr)

See also pin down

Word Origin for pin

Old English pinn; related to Old High German pfinn, Old Norse pinni nail
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

Medicine definitions for pin down

pin

[ pĭn ]

n.

A thin rod for securing the ends of fractured bones.
A peg for fixing the crown to the root of a tooth.

v.

To fasten or secure with a pin or pins.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with pin down (1 of 2)

pin down


1

Fix or establish clearly, as in The firefighters finally were able to pin down the source of the odor. [Mid-1900s]

2

Force someone to give precise information or opinions, as in The reporter pinned down the governor on the issue of conservation measures. [c. 1700]

Idioms and Phrases with pin down (2 of 2)

pin


In addition to the idioms beginning with pin

  • pin back one's ears
  • pin down
  • pin money
  • pin on
  • pin one's heart on
  • pin one's hopes on
  • pin someone's ears back

also see:

  • hear a pin drop
  • on pins and needles
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.