[ toob, tyoob ]
See synonyms for: tubetubing on

  1. a hollow, usually cylindrical body of metal, glass, rubber, or other material, used especially for conveying or containing liquids or gases.

  2. a small, collapsible, cylinder of metal or plastic sealed at one end and having a capped opening at the other from which paint, toothpaste, or some other semifluid substance may be squeezed.

  1. Anatomy, Zoology. any hollow, cylindrical vessel or organ: the bronchial tubes.

  2. Botany.

    • any hollow, elongated body or part.

    • the united lower portion of a gamopetalous corolla or a gamosepalous calyx.

  3. Electronics. electron tube.

  4. Informal.

  5. the tubular tunnel in which an underground railroad runs.

  6. the railroad itself.

  7. Surfing Slang. the curled hollow formed on the underside of a cresting wave.

  8. British. subway (def. 1).

  9. Australian Slang. a can of beer.

  10. Older Slang. a telescope.

verb (used with object),tubed, tub·ing.
  1. to furnish with a tube or tubes.

  2. to convey or enclose in a tube.

  1. to form into the shape of a tube; make tubular.

Idioms about tube

  1. down the tube / tubes, Informal. into a ruined, wasted, or abandoned state or condition.

Origin of tube

First recorded in 1590–1600, tube is from the Latin word tubus pipe

Other words from tube

  • tubeless, adjective
  • tubelike, adjective
  • mul·ti·tube, adjective

Words Nearby tube Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use tube in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for tube


/ (tjuːb) /

  1. a long hollow and typically cylindrical object, used for the passage of fluids or as a container

  2. a collapsible cylindrical container of soft metal or plastic closed with a cap, used to hold viscous liquids or pastes

  1. anatomy

  2. botany

    • the lower part of a gamopetalous corolla or gamosepalous calyx, below the lobes

    • any other hollow structure in a plant

  3. the tube British

    • Also called: the underground an underground railway system: US and Canadian equivalent: subway

    • the tunnels through which the railway runs

    • the train itself

    • (capital) trademark the London underground railway system

  4. electronics

  5. the tube slang a television set

  6. British slang a stupid or despicable person

  7. Australian slang a bottle or can of beer

  8. surfing the cylindrical passage formed when a wave breaks and the crest tips forward

  9. an archaic word for telescope

  1. to fit or supply with a tube or tubes

  2. to carry or convey in a tube

  1. to shape like a tube

Origin of tube

C17: from Latin tubus

Derived forms of tube

  • tubeless, adjective
  • tube-like, adjective

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 tube


see down the tubes.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.