- 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.
Origin of taper1
historical usage of taper
A taper is a candle that narrows at one end. The corresponding verb sense “to narrow gradually toward one end” appeared in the very early 17th century; the related figurative sense “to gradually decrease or diminish” dates from the mid-19th century.
OTHER WORDS FROM taperta·per·er, nounta·per·ing·ly, adverbun·ta·pered, adjectiveun·ta·per·ing, adjective
WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH tapertaper , tapir
Other definitions for taper (2 of 2)
How to use taper in a sentence
The Federal Reserve decided the economy is strong enough to start tapering its bond purchases.
She would never have used the “T” word, “tapering,” because unemployment remains unconcionably high.
On CNBC Wednesday morning, Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein called for the Fed to start tapering.
In June, Bernanke had said that the tapering could start only once gains in the labor market seemed persistent and safe.
The implication is that Summers sees less risk in rapid tapering.Congress and China Pose Biggest Threats to U.S. Economic Expansion|Robert Shapiro|September 5, 2013|DAILY BEAST
Next from the large casket Mrs. Sin took another smaller casket and a very long, tapering silver bodkin.Dope|Sax Rohmer
Her hands were sinuous as serpents, the fingers tapering, the nails very long like the Chinese.Valley of the Croen|Lee Tarbell
She bends over him, she draws forth a knife, slender, tapering to a point almost like a needle.Jack Harkaway's Boy Tinker Among The Turks|Bracebridge Hemyng
The caudal appendage of the juvenile and female is made up of three small joints tapering to a blunt end.
Cephalothorax suboval, upper margin strongly concave at the sides and tapering to a point at the median line.