lin·​en | \ ˈli-nən How to pronounce linen (audio) \

Definition of linen

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : made of flax
2 : made of or resembling linen



Definition of linen (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : cloth made of flax and noted for its strength, coolness, and luster
b : thread or yarn spun from flax
2 : clothing or household articles made of linen cloth or similar fabric
3 : paper made from linen fibers or with a linen finish

Examples of linen in a Sentence

Noun She washes the linen every week.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Whether it's blended into sheets or clothing, linen is summer's fabric of choice for a reason. Nicol Natale,, 30 July 2022 Instead of dry-cleaner bags, plastic garment bags, or plastic storage bins, opt for protective storage bags or bins made of linen or cotton. Jolie Kerr, Better Homes & Gardens, 25 July 2022 Throughout the house, Vroom used a lot of linen and wool. Deanna Kizis, Sunset Magazine, 22 July 2022 Rubeo ordered 50 yards of linen to drape on Bale, expertly arranging it to conceal secret aspects like the cooling system that would keep the actor from overheating and the harness added when Gorr flew through the air. New York Times, 13 July 2022 The yacht venders were in suits, but the new owners were in upscale Euro casual: untucked linen, tight jeans, twelve-hundred-dollar Prada sneakers. Evan Osnos, The New Yorker, 18 July 2022 The gorgeous dipped ceramic candles are available in blueberry, honeysuckle, hyacinth, linen, maple, and peach scents. Emily Vanschmus, Better Homes & Gardens, 12 July 2022 Wimbledon is white linen, polished gold, light cotton fineries, ascots and the Duke and Duchess of Kent in the royal box. Kurt Streeter, New York Times, 4 July 2022 First things first, look for lightweight fabrics, such as cotton, linen, and silk blends, that breathe well and will keep you cool and comfortable on the warmest days of the year. Kristina Rutkowski, Vogue, 21 June 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of linen


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


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

History and Etymology for linen


Middle English, from Old English līnen, from līn flax, from Latin linum flax; akin to Greek linon flax, thread

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Time Traveler for linen

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The first known use of linen was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near linen

linemen's pliers


linen closet

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Statistics for linen

Cite this Entry

“Linen.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for linen


lin·​en | \ ˈli-nən How to pronounce linen (audio) \

Kids Definition of linen

1 : smooth strong cloth or yarn made from flax
2 : household articles (as tablecloths or sheets) or clothing that were once often made of linen

More from Merriam-Webster on linen

Nglish: Translation of linen for Spanish Speakers

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


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