a material object without life or consciousness; an inanimate object.
some entity, object, or creature that is not or cannot be specifically designated or precisely described: The stick had a brass thing on it.
anything that is or may become an object of thought: things of the spirit.
things, matters; affairs: Things are going well now.
a fact, circumstance, or state of affairs: It is a curious thing.
an action, deed, event, or performance: to do great things; His death was a horrible thing.
a particular, respect, or detail: perfect in all things.
an aim; objective: The thing is to reach this line with the ball.
an article of clothing: I don't have a thing to wear.
implements, utensils, or other articles for service: I'll wash the breakfast things.
personal possessions or belongings: Pack your things and go!
a task; chore: I've got a lot of things to do today.
a living being or creature: His baby's a cute little thing.
a thought or statement: I have just one thing to say to you.
Informal. a particular interest or talent: Sports is not my thing.
Informal. a peculiar attitude or feeling, either positive or negative, toward something; mental quirk: She has a thing about cats.
something signified or represented, as distinguished from a word, symbol, or idea representing it.
a topic, behavior, or activity involving or limited to a specified group: It’s a girl thing, so you wouldn’t understand.
Informal. something that people do (often used in expressions of mild disapproval or mockery): Since when did clapping at the end of a movie become a thing?
Law. anything that may be the subject of a property right.
new thing, Jazz. free jazz.
something that is correct or fashionable: That café is the thing now.
that which is expedient or necessary: The thing to do is to tell them the truth.
Idioms about thing
do / find one's own thing, Informal. to pursue a lifestyle that expresses one's self.: Also do / find one's thing.
make a good thing of, Informal. to turn (a situation, experience, etc.) to one's own profit; benefit by: She made a good thing of her spare-time hobbies.
not to get a thing out of,
to be unable to obtain information or news from: The police couldn't get a thing out of him.
to fail to appreciate, understand, or derive aesthetic pleasure from: My wife likes opera, but I don't get a thing out of it.
see / hear things, Informal. to have hallucinations.
Other definitions for thing (2 of 2)
(in Scandinavian countries) a public meeting or assembly, especially a legislative assembly or a court of law.: Compare thingstead.
- Also ting.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use thing in a sentence
That will probably be a theme for the whole year, but it is good timing for us to reset, focus on our game, get some key guys back and get other guys back who are nursing some things.For first time in three weeks, Capitals could be at full strength Sunday | Samantha Pell | February 11, 2021 | Washington Post
That almost cost me my life, but it’s also the things that saved my life.Ryan Newman returns to Daytona 500, with no memory of 2020 crash and ‘therefore no fear’ | Cindy Boren | February 11, 2021 | Washington Post
“Probably more can be done than just masks and distancing because we are doing all those things and if that alone was enough, we wouldn’t be in this situation,” he said.The Caps are dealing with an unexpected break. They hope to use it to recover and reset. | Samantha Pell | February 10, 2021 | Washington Post
If you’ve been struggling to give your business the boost it deserves, implementing these strategies will go a long way in turning things around.A small business’ step-by-step guide to dominating local search in 2021 | Joseph Dyson | February 10, 2021 | Search Engine Watch
To say that a certain percentage of our population is not able to do these things in this day and age is not morally right, it’s not fair, and it is has to be dealt with.
There is no such thing as speech so hateful or offensive it somehow “justifies” or “legitimizes” the use of violence.
“They sure took the Sony thing seriously,” Attkisson said dryly.Ex-CBS Reporter Sharyl Attkisson’s Battle Royale With the Feds | Lloyd Grove | January 9, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
But the other thing that needs to be done is for us citizens to do.Ayaan Hirsi Ali: Our Duty Is to Keep Charlie Hebdo Alive | Ayaan Hirsi Ali | January 8, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
No one seems to know who that is—or why they would want to do such a thing.
When I was in Holland, this is the kind of thing people feared.Ayaan Hirsi Ali: Our Duty Is to Keep Charlie Hebdo Alive | Ayaan Hirsi Ali | January 8, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
"There's just one thing I'd like to ask, if you don't mind," said Cynthia, coming suddenly out of a brown study.The Boarded-Up House | Augusta Huiell Seaman
That it is a reasonable and proper thing to ask our statesmen and politicians: what is going to happen to the world?The Salvaging Of Civilisation | H. G. (Herbert George) Wells
Of course the expression of this value is modified and characterized by the nature of the thing spoken of.Expressive Voice Culture | Jessie Eldridge Southwick
It is only just to say, that the officers exhibited a degree of courage far beyond any thing we had expected from them.
And is this a mere fantastic talk, or is this a thing that could be done and that ought to be done?The Salvaging Of Civilisation | H. G. (Herbert George) Wells
British Dictionary definitions for thing (1 of 2)
an object, fact, affair, circumstance, or concept considered as being a separate entity
any inanimate object
an object or entity that cannot or need not be precisely named
informal a person or animal regarded as the object of pity, contempt, etc: you poor thing
an event or act
a thought or statement
law any object or right that may be the subject of property (as distinguished from a person)
a device, means, or instrument
(often plural) a possession, article of clothing, etc
informal the normal pattern of behaviour in a particular context: not interested in the marriage thing
informal a mental attitude, preoccupation or obsession (esp in the phrase have a thing about)
an activity or mode of behaviour satisfying to one's personality (esp in the phrase do one's (own) thing)
the done thing acceptable or normal behaviour
the thing the latest fashion
be on to a good thing to be in a profitable situation or position
make a thing of to make a fuss about; exaggerate the importance of
British Dictionary definitions for thing (2 of 2)
(often capital) a law court or public assembly in the Scandinavian countries: Also: ting
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 thing
In addition to the idiom beginning with thing
- thing or two
- things are looking up
- all the rage (thing)
- all things to all men
- amount to the same thing
- do one's thing
- first thing
- first things first
- for one (thing)
- get (a thing) going
- get into the swing of things
- greatest thing since sliced bread
- have a good thing going
- have a thing about
- just one of those things
- know all the answers (a thing or two)
- little knowledge is a dangerous thing
- near thing
- no such thing
- not know beans (the first thing)
- of all things
- other things being equal
- seeing things
- sure thing
- the latest (thing)
- the thing
- the thing is
- too much of a good thing
- very thing
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.