[ tey-buhl ]
See synonyms for: tabletabled on

  1. an article of furniture consisting of a flat, slablike top supported on one or more legs or other supports: a kitchen table; an operating table;a pool table.

  2. such a piece of furniture specifically used for serving food to those seated at it.

  1. the food placed on a table to be eaten: She sets a good table.

  2. a group of persons at a table, as for a meal, game, or business transaction.

  3. a gaming table.

  4. a flat or plane surface; a level area.

  5. a tableland or plateau.

  6. a concise list or guide: The table of contents in the front of the book includes chapter names and page numbers.

  7. an arrangement of words, numbers, or signs, or combinations of them, as in parallel columns, to exhibit a set of facts or relations in a definite, compact, and comprehensive form; a synopsis or scheme.

  8. Table, Astronomy. the constellation Mensa.

  9. a flat and relatively thin piece of wood, stone, metal, or other hard substance, especially one artificially shaped for a particular purpose.

  10. Architecture.

    • a course or band, especially of masonry, having a distinctive form or position.

    • a distinctively treated surface on a wall.

  11. a smooth, flat board or slab on which inscriptions may be put.

  12. tables,

    • the tablets on which certain collections of laws were anciently inscribed: the tables of the Decalogue.

    • the laws themselves.

  13. Anatomy. the inner or outer hard layer or any of the flat bones of the skull.

  14. Music. a sounding board.

  15. Jewelry.

    • the upper horizontal surface of a faceted gem.

    • a gem with such a surface.

verb (used with object),ta·bled, ta·bling.
  1. to place (a card, money, etc.) on a table.

  2. to enter in or form into a table or list.

  1. Parliamentary Procedure.

    • Chiefly U.S. to lay aside (a proposal, resolution, etc.) for future discussion, usually with a view to postponing or shelving the matter indefinitely.

    • British. to present (a proposal, resolution, etc.) for discussion.

  1. of, relating to, or for use on a table: a table lamp.

  2. suitable for serving at a table or for eating or drinking: table grapes.

Idioms about table

  1. on the table, Parliamentary Procedure.

    • U.S. postponed.

    • British. submitted for consideration.

  2. turn the tables, to cause a reversal of an existing situation, especially with regard to gaining the upper hand over a competitor, rival, antagonist, etc.: Fortune turned the tables and we won. We turned the tables on them and undersold them by 50 percent.

  1. under the table,

    • as a bribe; secretly: She gave money under the table to get the apartment.

  2. wait (on) table, to work as a waiter or waitress: He worked his way through college by waiting table. : Also wait tables.

Origin of table

First recorded before 900; (noun) Middle English; Old English tabule, variant of tabula, from Latin: “plank, tablet”; (verb) late Middle English: “to record on a table, entertain at table,” derivative of the noun

Other words from table

  • ta·ble·less, adjective
  • un·ta·bled, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use table in a sentence

  • Material for table cloths; table linen, Diaper for tabling .

  • I was early at work next morning, and did some plane-tabling at Grnanes before breakfast.

    Across Iceland | William Bisiker
  • "Large tabling and belly cheer," said Blair, quoting his favourite Elizabethan author.

    Kathleen | Christopher Morley

British Dictionary definitions for table


/ (ˈteɪbəl) /

  1. a flat horizontal slab or board, usually supported by one or more legs, on which objects may be placed: Related adjective: mensal

    • such a slab or board on which food is served: we were six at table

    • (as modifier): table linen

    • (in combination): a tablecloth

  1. food as served in a particular household or restaurant: a good table

  2. such a piece of furniture specially designed for any of various purposes: a backgammon table; bird table

    • a company of persons assembled for a meal, game, etc

    • (as modifier): table talk

  3. any flat or level area, such as a plateau

  4. a rectangular panel set below or above the face of a wall

  5. architect another name for cordon (def. 4)

  6. an upper horizontal facet of a cut gem

  7. music the sounding board of a violin, guitar, or similar stringed instrument

    • an arrangement of words, numbers, or signs, usually in parallel columns, to display data or relations: a table of contents

  8. a tablet on which laws were inscribed by the ancient Romans, the Hebrews, etc

  9. palmistry an area of the palm's surface bounded by four lines

  10. printing a slab of smooth metal on which ink is rolled to its proper consistency

    • either of the two bony plates that form the inner and outer parts of the flat bones of the cranium

    • any thin flat plate, esp of bone

  11. on the table put forward for discussion and acceptance: we currently have our final offer on the table

  12. turn the tables on someone to cause a complete reversal of circumstances, esp to defeat or get the better of someone who was previously in a stronger position

  1. to place on a table

  2. British to submit (a bill, etc) for consideration by a legislative body

  1. US to suspend discussion of (a bill, etc) indefinitely or for some time

  2. to enter in or form into a list; tabulate

Origin of table

C12: via Old French from Latin tabula a writing tablet

Derived forms of table

  • tableful, noun
  • tableless, adjective

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with table


see clear out (the table); lay one's cards on the table; on the table; set the table; turn the tables; under the table; wait at table.

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