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See more synonyms for tine on Thesaurus.com
  1. a sharp, projecting point or prong, as of a fork.
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Also especially British, tyne.

Origin of tine

before 900; late Middle English tyne, Middle English tind, Old English; cognate with Old High German zint, Old Norse tindr
Related formstined, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for tine

Historical Examples

  • To "tine a darg," is to lose a day's work: you have arrived too late.

    The Proverbs of Scotland

    Alexander Hislop

  • If I were made of iron, at this tine I could write no more.'


    Marcus Aurelius

  • "I see you have a tine with you," said Mr. Mack, looking at the tine I carried.

  • It would be better to sit down quietly and look upward to tine sky.

  • A tine gallop of grass sward led to the pound, and over this I went, cheered with as merry a cry as ever stirred a light heart.

British Dictionary definitions for tine


  1. a slender prong, esp of a fork
  2. any of the sharp terminal branches of a deer's antler
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Derived Formstined, adjective

Word Origin

Old English tind; related to Old Norse tindr, Old High German zint
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 tine


Old English tind, a general Germanic word (cf. Old High German zint "sharp point, spike," Old Norse tindr "tine, point, top, summit," German Zinne "pinnacle"), of unknown origin.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

tine in Medicine


  1. The slender pointed end of an instrument, such as an explorer used in dentistry.
  2. An instrument usually containing several individual prongs and used to introduce antigen, such as tuberculin, into the skin.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.