tocsin


toc·sin

noun \ˈtäk-sən\

Definition of TOCSIN

1
:  an alarm bell or the ringing of it
2
:  a warning signal

Examples of TOCSIN

  1. <the tocsin rang out, warning us of the approaching tornado>
  2. <noted that a sudden drop in a student's grades may be a tocsin of a serious personal problem>

Origin of TOCSIN

Middle French toquassen, from Old Occitan tocasenh, from tocar to touch, ring a bell (from Vulgar Latin *toccare) + senh sign, bell, from Medieval Latin & Latin signum; Medieval Latin, bell, from Late Latin, ringing of a bell, from Latin, mark, sign — more at touch, sign
First Known Use: 1586

Related to TOCSIN

Synonyms
flag, signal

Rhymes with TOCSIN

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