fine

1 of 6

adjective

finer; finest
1
a
: all right
that's fine with me
b
: well or healthy : not sick or injured
feel fine
2
: superior in kind, quality, or appearance : excellent
a fine job
a fine day
fine wines
3
a(1)
: very thin in gauge or texture
fine thread
(2)
: not coarse
fine sand
(3)
: very small
fine print
(4)
: keen
a knife with a fine edge
(5)
: very precise or accurate
a fine adjustment
trying to be too fine with his pitches
b
: physically trained or hardened close to the limit of efficiency
used of an athlete or animal
4
: delicate, subtle, or sensitive in quality, perception, or discrimination
a fine distinction
5
a
: ornate sense 1
fine writing
b
: marked by or affecting elegance or refinement
fine manners
6
used as an intensive
the leader, in a fine frenzy, beheaded one of his wives Brian Crozier
7
a
: free from impurity
b
of a metal : having a stated proportion of pure metal in the composition expressed in parts per thousand
a gold coin .9166 fine
fineness noun

fine

2 of 6

adverb

1
: finely: such as
a
: very well
b
2
: with a very narrow margin of time or space
she had not intended to cut her escape so fine Melinda Beck et al.

fine

3 of 6

noun (1)

1
a
: a sum imposed as punishment for an offense
The motorist had to pay a fine for speeding.
b
: a forfeiture or penalty paid to an injured party in a civil action
2
: a compromise of a fictitious suit used as a form of conveyance of lands
3
obsolete : end, conclusion

fine

4 of 6

verb (1)

fined; fining

transitive verb

: to impose a fine on : punish by a fine

fine

5 of 6

verb (2)

fined; fining

transitive verb

1
: purify, clarify
fine and filter wine
2
: to make finer in quality or size

intransitive verb

1
: to become pure or clear
the ale will fine
2
: to become smaller in lines or proportions

fine

6 of 6

noun (2)

fi·​ne ˈfē-(ˌ)nā How to pronounce fine (audio)
: end
used as a direction in music to mark the closing point after a repeat
Phrases
in fine
: in short

Example Sentences

Adjective “Is there anything wrong?” “No, everything's fine.” The house looks fine to me. I think that's a fine idea. You did a fine job. The house is in fine shape. This is a fine example of what can go wrong when one person is given too much power. He's a fine young man. “Did you hurt yourself?” “No, I'm fine.” Adverb She did fine on the test. My mother is doing fine, thank you. This'll do fine for now. She talks and walks so fine, just like a great lady. See More

Word History

Etymology

Adjective

Middle English fin, fyne "of choice quality, superior, admirable, free from impurity, delicate," borrowed from Anglo-French fin, going back to Gallo-Romance *fīnus "extreme, ultimate," adjective derivative of Latin fīnis "boundary, limit, ending" — more at final entry 1

Adverb

Middle English fyne, derivative of fin, fyne fine entry 1

Noun (1)

Middle English fin, fyne "end, conclusion, final legal settlement relating to alienation of property, fee paid to complete a legal conveyance, money paid in lieu of judicial punishment," borrowed from Anglo-French fin, going back to Latin fīnis "boundary, limit, terminal point, ending" (Medieval Latin also, "legal settlement, agreement involving payment, payment in lieu of punishment") — more at final entry 1

Verb (1)

in part derivative of fine entry 3, in part continuing Middle English finen "to pay a fine," borrowed from Anglo-French finer "to pay as a fine, make a payment," verbal derivative of fin fine entry 3

Verb (2)

Middle English finen, derivative of fin, fyne fine entry 1

Noun (2)

borrowed from Italian, going back to Latin fīnis "boundary, limit, ending" — more at final entry 1

First Known Use

Adjective

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 7a

Adverb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

Verb (1)

circa 1513, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun (2)

1740, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of fine was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near fine

Cite this Entry

“Fine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fine. Accessed 28 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition

fine 1 of 5

noun

: a sum of money to be paid as a punishment

fine

2 of 5

verb

fined; fining
: to punish by a fine

fine

3 of 5

adjective

finer; finest
1
: free from impurity
2
a
: not thick, coarse, or dull
fine thread
fine sand
b
: small entry 1 sense 1
fine print
c
: done with extreme care and accuracy
fine measurement
3
: subtle sense 1b
a fine distinction
4
: excellent in quality or appearance
a fine spring day
5
: to one's liking : agreeable
that's fine with me
6
: very well
feel fine
finely adverb
fineness noun

fine

4 of 5

adverb

1
: in a fine manner
2
: very well
did fine on the test
I liked it fine

fine

5 of 5

noun

fi·​ne
ˈfē-(ˌ)nā
: end entry 1 sense 1b
used as a direction in music to mark the closing point after a repeat

Medical Definition

finer; finest
of bodily tremors
: of slight excursion

Legal Definition

fine 1 of 2

noun

1
: a sum imposed as punishment for an offense compare restitution
2
: a forfeiture or penalty paid to an injured party in a civil action

fine

2 of 2

transitive verb

fined; fining
: to impose a fine on : punish by fine

History and Etymology for fine

Noun

Anglo-French fin, fine & Medieval Latin finis end, boundary, agreement, payment for release or privilege, monetary penalty, from Latin finis end, boundary

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