verb \ˈtrim\

: to cut (something) off something else : to remove (something) by cutting

: to make (something) neat by cutting it

: to make the size, amount, or extent of (something) smaller


Full Definition of TRIM

transitive verb
:  to embellish with or as if with ribbons, lace, or ornaments <trim the Christmas tree> <the coat was trimmed with fur>
a :  to administer a beating to :  thrash
b :  defeat <trimmed me at chess>
a :  to make trim and neat especially by cutting or clipping <trim the hedges>
b :  to free of excess or extraneous matter by or as if by cutting <trim a budget> <trim down the inventory>
c :  to remove by or as if by cutting <trimmed thousands from federal payrolls — Grit>
a (1) :  to cause (as a ship) to assume a desirable position in the water by arrangement of ballast, cargo, or passengers (2) :  to adjust (as an airplane or submarine) for horizontal movement or for motion upward or downward
b :  to adjust (as cargo or a sail) to a desired position
intransitive verb
a :  to maintain neutrality between opposing parties or to favor each equally
b :  to change one's views for reasons of expediency
:  to assume or cause a boat to assume a desired position in the water <a boat that trims badly>
trim one's sails
:  to adjust oneself or one's actions to prevailing conditions <compromise or trim your sails to suit the political winds — Philip Johnston>

Examples of TRIM

  1. The hedges need to be trimmed.
  2. They are looking for ways to trim the budget.
  3. We trimmed the Christmas tree.
  4. a pillow trimmed in lace

Origin of TRIM

probably from Middle English *trimmen to prepare, put in order, from Old English trymian, trymman to strengthen, arrange, from trum strong, firm; probably akin to Old English trēo tree, wood — more at tree
First Known Use: circa 1521

Rhymes with TRIM



: neat and orderly

: slim and healthy


Full Definition of TRIM

obsolete :  excellent, fine
:  ready for service or use; also :  in good physical condition <keeps trim by jogging>
:  exhibiting neatness, good order, or compactness of line or structure <trim houses>
trim·ly adverb
trim·ness noun

Examples of TRIM

  1. She has a trim figure.
  2. He keeps fit and trim by biking.

First Known Use of TRIM

circa 1521



Definition of TRIM

:  in a trim manner :  trimly —used chiefly in combination <the trim-cut forest vistas — W. M. Thackeray>

First Known Use of TRIM




: an act of trimming something (such as hair)

: material (such as ribbons, lace, etc.) that is used for decorating something especially around its edges

Full Definition of TRIM

:  suitable or excellent condition <tries to keep in trim>
a :  one's clothing or appearance
b :  material used for ornament or trimming
c :  the woodwork in the finish of a building especially around openings
d :  the interior furnishings of an automobile
a :  the position of a ship or boat especially with reference to the horizontal; also :  the difference between the draft of a ship forward and that aft
b :  the relation between the plane of a sail and the direction of the ship
c :  the buoyancy status of a submarine
d :  the attitude of a lighter-than-air craft relative to a fore-and-aft horizontal plane
e :  the attitude with respect to wind axes at which an airplane will continue in level flight with free controls
:  something that is trimmed off or cut out
:  a haircut that neatens a previous haircut

Examples of TRIM

  1. a skirt with lace trim
  2. <the doctor declared her to be in good trim for the race>

First Known Use of TRIM

circa 1593

Other Automotive Terms

articulated, block, choke, clutch, diesel, neutral, transmission


geographical name \ˈtrim\

Definition of TRIM

town E Ireland of County Meath pop 1781


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