Simple Definition of tenderloin
: a piece of very tender meat from the back of a cow or pig
Full Definition of tenderloin
1 : a strip of tender meat consisting of a large internal muscle of the loin on each side of the vertebral column
2 [from its making possible a luxurious diet for a corrupt police officer] : a district of a city largely devoted to vice
Did You Know?
A tenderloin, of course, is a juicy and tasty cut of meat. In the late 19th century, however, Tenderloin saw use as a nickname for the neighborhood of midtown Manhattan, west of Broadway and below 42nd Street. This district, which contained numerous bordellos, gambling houses, and watering holes, alongside theaters and hotels, became a hotbed of corruption - and, it was alleged by some, blackmail by police. The notion of dishonest law enforcers being able to afford a nice meal off activity in this district is believed to have given the Tenderloin its name. Soon the term was applied to similarly seedy districts in other cities.
First Known Use of tenderloin
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up tenderloin? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).