a small spoon generally used to stir tea, coffee, etc.

Origin of teaspoon

First recorded in 1680–90; tea + spoon
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for teaspoon

Contemporary Examples of teaspoon

Historical Examples of teaspoon

  • Her hand rattled the teaspoon brusquely by an involuntary movement.


    Joseph Conrad

  • Just as soon as the child is able to swallow, give a teaspoon of syrup of ipecac.

    The Mother and Her Child

    William S. Sadler

  • A teaspoon of syrup of ipecac, repeated in fifteen minutes if necessary.

    The Mother and Her Child

    William S. Sadler

  • He then asked Mrs. Woggs to get him a little molasses in a cup, and a teaspoon.

    Proud and Lazy

    Oliver Optic

  • She agitated the Britannia-metal teaspoon furiously in the empty tumbler.

    The Dop Doctor

    Clotilde Inez Mary Graves

British Dictionary definitions for teaspoon



a small spoon used for stirring tea, eating certain desserts, etc
Also called: teaspoonful (ˈtiːˌspuːnfʊl) the amount contained in such a spoon
a unit of capacity used in cooking, medicine, etc, equal to about one fluid dram
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

Word Origin and History for teaspoon

1680s, from tea + spoon (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

teaspoon in Medicine




A measure of about 1 fluid dram or 5 milliliters.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.