hone in

verb
honed in; honing in; hones in

Definition of hone in

intransitive verb

: to move toward or focus attention on an objective looking back for the ball honing in— George Plimpton a missile honing in on its target— Bob Greene hones in on the plights and victories of the common man— Lisa Russell

Hone in vs. Home in: Usage Guide

Most usage commentators consider hone in to be a mistake for home in. The use may have arisen from home in by the weakening of the \m\ sound to \n\ or it may have developed simply because of the influence of hone, with perhaps an underlying sense that "honing" figuratively involves a narrowing or sharpening of focus. Whatever the explanation of its origins, it has established itself in American English and has begun to make a few inroads into British English as well. Even so, your use of it especially in writing is likely to be called a mistake. Home in or in figurative use zero in is an easy alternative.

First Known Use of hone in

1965, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hone in

alteration of home in

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hone in

Dictionary Entries near hone in

hone

Honecker

Honegger

hone in

hone in on

honest

honest broker

Statistics for hone in

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hone in

The first known use of hone in was in 1965

See more words from the same year

Comments on hone in

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a secret plot to overthrow a government

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

April 2019 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a bird amidst buds
  • Which is a synonym of propitious?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!