• synonyms


[ten-uh nt]
See more synonyms for tenant on Thesaurus.com
  1. a person or group that rents and occupies land, a house, an office, or the like, from another for a period of time; lessee.
  2. Law. a person who holds or possesses for a time lands, tenements, or personalty of another, usually for rent.
  3. an occupant or inhabitant of any place.
Show More
verb (used with object)
  1. to hold or occupy as a tenant; dwell in; inhabit.
Show More
verb (used without object)
  1. to dwell or live (usually followed by in).
Show More

Origin of tenant

1250–1300; Middle English tena(u)nt < Anglo-French; Middle French tenant, noun use of present participle of tenir to hold ≪ Latin tenēre. See -ant
Related formsten·ant·a·ble, adjectiveten·ant·less, adjectiveten·ant·like, adjectivenon·ten·ant, nounnon·ten·ant·a·ble, adjectiveun·ten·ant·a·ble, adjectiveun·ten·ant·ed, adjective
Can be confusedtenant tenet
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for untenanted

deserted, uninhabited, unfilled, unemployed, unused, idle, bare, vacant, abandoned, available, clear, devoid, disengaged, free, stark, void, tenantless, unengaged, untenanted, empty

Examples from the Web for untenanted

Historical Examples of untenanted

  • From the knoll where he stood he could see every inch of that hollow and it was untenanted.

    Galusha the Magnificent

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • It had been untenanted for a good while and was in rather bad repair.


    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • All he craved was the country, and a whole lot of it, with untenanted roads.

    Mixed Faces

    Roy Norton

  • The Heathcotes had gone to Rome for the winter, and the Villa was shut up and untenanted.

    One Of Them

    Charles James Lever

  • The trolley-car that met his train was rusty, paintless, forlorn, untenanted.

    In a Little Town

    Rupert Hughes

British Dictionary definitions for untenanted


  1. a person who holds, occupies, or possesses land or property by any kind of right or title, esp from a landlord under a lease
  2. a person who has the use of a house, flat, etc, subject to the payment of rent
  3. any holder or occupant
Show More
  1. (tr) to hold (land or property) as a tenant
  2. (intr foll by in) rare to dwell
Show More
Derived Formstenantable, adjectivetenantless, adjectivetenant-like, adjective

Word Origin for tenant

C14: from Old French, literally: (one who is) holding, from tenir to hold, from Latin tenēre
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 untenanted


1670s, from un- (1) "not" + tenanted (see tenant).

Show More



early 14c., "person who holds lands by title or by lease," from Anglo-French tenaunt (late 13c.), Old French tenant (12c.), noun use of present participle of tenir "to hold," from Latin tenere "hold, keep" (see tenet).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper