\ ˈhōn How to pronounce hone (audio) \
honed; honing

Definition of hone

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to sharpen or smooth with a whetstone
2 : to make more acute, intense, or effective : whet helped her hone her comic timing— Patricia Bosworth



Definition of hone (Entry 2 of 3)

honed; honing

Definition of hone (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 dialect : yearn often used with for or after
2 dialect : grumble, moan

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Other Words from hone

Verb (1)

honer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for hone

Synonyms: Verb (1)

Antonyms: Verb (1)

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Examples of hone in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb With that, the mono-to-braid transition era has helped many anglers to hone their skills. The Editors, Outdoor Life, "How To Catch a 50-Pound Striper From The Surf," 22 June 2020 In a twisted way, the COVID-19 pandemic actually gave him more of an opportunity to put in work and hone his niche role. Eric Hansen, The Indianapolis Star, "How the incoming Notre Dame long snapper stayed sharp," 15 June 2020 For some musicians, the pandemic has presented an opportunity to hone their craft. The Economist, "Sofa sessions The pandemic has brought about a home-studio boom," 15 June 2020 Scott, who met with top officials at the White House on Tuesday, is working closely with a handful of GOP senators to hone the specifics of a legislative package. Kathryn Watson, CBS News, "Republicans wade into police reform proposals," 9 June 2020 Companies are continuing to update and hone their autonomous vehicle systems. Tom Krisher, Detroit Free Press, "Study: Autonomous vehicles won't make roads completely safe," 4 June 2020 Taking time to work and hone your professional focus is a critical step in the process of knowing when to attend graduate school. Stacie Hagenbaugh, Quartz at Work, "Lessons for the class of 2020 from the class of 2008," 2 June 2020 Schneider honed and then expanded Kraftwerk’s synthetic vocabulary of non-naturalistic blips, clicks and buzzes, Vocoder harmonies and tones sustained beyond human breath, echoes and reverberations that did not come out of physical spaces. Jon Pareles, New York Times, "Florian Schneider’s 10 Essential Songs, in Kraftwerk and Beyond," 7 May 2020 News, by honing his social media skills and gaining visibility online. Kimi Robinson, azcentral, "Remember the Phoenix teen who asked Miley Cyrus to prom? Here's what he's up to on TikTok," 1 May 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hone.' 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 hone

Verb (1)

1788, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hone

Noun and Verb (1)

Middle English, from Old English hān stone; akin to Old Norse hein whetstone, Latin cot-, cos, Sanskrit śiśāti he whets

Verb (2)

Middle French hoigner to grumble

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Time Traveler for hone

Time Traveler

The first known use of hone was in the 14th century

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Statistics for hone

Last Updated

1 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Hone.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hone. Accessed 5 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for hone


\ ˈhōn How to pronounce hone (audio) \
honed; honing

Kids Definition of hone

: to sharpen with or as if with a fine abrasive stone

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More from Merriam-Webster on hone

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hone

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hone

Spanish Central: Translation of hone

Nglish: Translation of hone for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hone for Arabic Speakers

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