den·​im | \ ˈde-nəm How to pronounce denim (audio) \

Definition of denim

1a : a firm durable twilled usually cotton fabric woven with colored warp and white filling threads
b : a similar fabric woven in colored stripes
2 denims plural : overalls or trousers usually of blue denim

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Other Words from denim

denimed \ ˈde-​nəmd How to pronounce denimed (audio) \ adjective

Did You Know?

Many fabrics have been named for the places where they were once made. Denim gets its name from Nîmes, a city in France famous for its textiles. But the name came about in an unusual way. The fabric, a heavy serge, was originally called serge de Nîmes, literally, “serge from Nîmes.” The “s” on Nîmes is not pronounced in French, so when the name of the fabric came into English, it was often written serge de Nim and later serge denim. In time, this was shortened to simply denim.

Examples of denim in a Sentence

He's wearing faded denims and cowboy boots.

Recent Examples on the Web

The collection even has a denim jacket covered in fan-favorite pups. Claudia Harmata,, "Disney's New Fashion Line Lets You Match With Your Adorable Disney-Loving Dog!," 29 July 2019 While stepping out for lunch with her brother in Burbank, California on July 25, Zendaya was spotted wearing plaid pants with a denim jacket over a white tee. Jasmine Gomez, Seventeen, "Zendaya Borrowed an Outfit from Tom Holland and It's the Cutest Thing Ever," 26 July 2019 Short denim jumpsuits were wide enough to suggest a dress and ensure comfort, while a lemon yellow belted jacket created a male peplum over a matching cargo trouser. Washington Post, "Sunnei to Palm Angels, streetwear in fashion focus in Milan," 16 June 2019 One such creation is a denim jumpsuit made of five pairs of old jeans. Ray A. Smith, WSJ, "Today’s Chic Look? ‘Upcycled’ Clothes," 14 Apr. 2018 All in all, wearing Outland denim was an ethical hat trick for the Duchess of Sussex, who not only champions the advancement of women worldwide, but has also favored environmentally friendly fashion brands in the past. Roxanne Adamiyatt, Town & Country, "Meghan Markle Wore Outland Denim, Putting the Brand on the Map—And Changed Lives in the Process," 21 July 2019 Denim was de rigueur in the 2010s, and while the Rachel Comey Legion jeans and Citizens of Humanity’s cropped kick flares put up a good fight, Vetements’s patched-together denim was the clear victor. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "We’ve Gotta Have It: The 17 Items that Defined Fashion in the 2010s," 18 July 2019 My 3x1 denim jackets, my ShipRock SantaFe turquoise pins and my Airforce 1s. Jamie Lisanti,, "Fashionable 50," 18 July 2019 The heat causes all the fibers in the denim to contract, making the pair smaller. Rachel Bogo, Seventeen, "Here's How To Shrink Jeans for the Perfect Fit," 5 Apr. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'denim.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of denim

1695, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for denim

French (serge) de Nîmes serge of Nîmes, France

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Statistics for denim

Last Updated

15 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for denim

The first known use of denim was in 1695

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More Definitions for denim



English Language Learners Definition of denim

: a strong usually blue cotton cloth that is used especially to make jeans
: pants that are made of denim


den·​im | \ ˈde-nəm How to pronounce denim (audio) \

Kids Definition of denim

1 : a firm often coarse cotton cloth
2 denims plural : overalls or pants of usually blue denim

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More from Merriam-Webster on denim

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with denim

Spanish Central: Translation of denim

Nglish: Translation of denim for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of denim for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about denim

Comments on denim

What made you want to look up denim? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


not constant or steady

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