verb (used without object)
verb (used with object)
- to become gradually more slender toward one end.
- to cease by degrees; decrease; diminish: The storm is beginning to taper off now. I haven't stopped smoking entirely, but I'm tapering off to three cigarettes a day.
- tape streamer,
- tape transport,
- taper off,
- taper pin,
- taper relief,
- tapered roller bearing,
Origin of taper1
Origin of taper2
Examples from the Web for taper
After that time, it is my hope that things will taper off a bit.Alex Haley’s 1965 Playboy Interview with Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.|Alex Haley|January 19, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Markets would have to defend against the possibility of a strong report reigniting October taper expectations.
This is the dreaded “taper” that has lately given stock markets nausea.Bernanke Hints at Fed Exit, but Don’t Expect Big Name to Succeed Him|Daniel Gross|June 6, 2013|DAILY BEAST
The massive earth walls are three stories high and taper toward the top.
All lesser interests had dwindled and grown poor; her life seemed flickering out like a taper in the breeze.Country Neighbors|Alice Brown
In one chamber there was a girl who took a love-letter from her pillow and read it in tears, by the light of a taper.Japanese Fairy Tales|Grace James
They gradually become narrower fore and aft, and taper upwards.The Kingdom of the Yellow Robe|Ernest Young
They taper to a point and have edges that are smooth all round.Flowers Shown to the Children|C. E. Smith
He lighted the taper of a tiny lamp that burnt before an image of the Mother of Sorrows in a niche.Under the Witches' Moon|Nathan Gallizier
Word Origin for taper
Old English tapur, taper "candle," not found outside English, possibly a dissimilated borrowing from Latin papyrus (see papyrus), which was used in Medieval Latin and some Romance languages for "wick of a candle" (e.g. Italian papijo "wick"), because these often were made from the pith of papyrus. Cf. also German kerze "candle," from Old High German charza, from Latin charta, from Greek khartes "papyrus, roll made from papyrus, wick made from pith of papyrus."
"shoot up like a flame or spire," 1580s, from taper (n.). Sense of "gradually decrease in size, force, etc." first recorded c.1600. Related: Tapered; tapering.