1 of 2


often attributive
: any of a genus (Pinus of the family Pinaceae, the pine family) of coniferous evergreen trees that have slender elongated needles and include some valuable timber trees and ornamentals
: the straight-grained white or yellow usually durable and resinous wood of a pine varying from extreme softness in the white pine to hardness in the longleaf pine
: any of various Australian coniferous trees (as of the genera Callitris or Araucaria)
piney adjective
or less commonly piny


2 of 2


pined; pining

intransitive verb

: to lose vigor, health, or flesh (as through grief) : languish
: to yearn intensely and persistently especially for something unattainable
they still pined for their lost wealth
Choose the Right Synonym for pine

long, yearn, hanker, pine, hunger, thirst mean to have a strong desire for something.

long implies a wishing with one's whole heart and often a striving to attain.

longed for some rest

yearn suggests an eager, restless, or painful longing.

yearned for a stage career

hanker suggests the uneasy promptings of unsatisfied appetite or desire.

always hankering for money

pine implies a languishing or a fruitless longing for what is impossible.

pined for a lost love

hunger and thirst imply an insistent or impatient craving or a compelling need.

hungered for a business of his own
thirsted for power

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web
Reindeer, pine trees, doves and more wintery details adorned this cup. Sabrina Weiss, Peoplemag, 30 Nov. 2022 Stock up on miniature pine trees, real or faux and place them in planters around your front door, then use evergreen garland around doors and windows. Sarah Martens, Better Homes & Gardens, 21 Nov. 2022 Select a table runner that showcases snowy scenes, grab a candle or two that smells like pine trees, and don’t forget to add some snacks! Jess Safavimehr, House Beautiful, 16 Nov. 2022 Borgogno achieved this effect by clever use of color and texture, and by designing the residence around existing pine trees and adding more than 1,000 plants sourced from Italy and France to the three-acre garden. Nick Scott, Robb Report, 15 Nov. 2022 For the frame, consider hardwood such as oak, ash, or beech, and avoid pine, which is lower cost but not as durable. Molly Miller, Better Homes & Gardens, 14 Nov. 2022 Elders in the tribe of about 1,350 remember dense forests of fir, pine, spruce and aspen. Tammy Webber, Fortune, 2 Nov. 2022 This scrub from Folk Magick Botanicals has a gentle but soothing scent that mixes pine, tea tree and sandalwood and feels both luxurious and comforting. Los Angeles Times, 2 Nov. 2022 Currently 20 percent off, the sleek candle features notes of Siberian pine, apple blossom, fir balsam, sandalwood, cedarwood, and rosemary. Isabel Garcia, Peoplemag, 1 Nov. 2022
The brand has seven aromatherapy essential oil blends, including Deep Relax (chamomile, vetiver, and sandalwood) and Support Breathe (eucalyptus, tea tree, and pine essential oils). Rebecca Norris Updated, Peoplemag, 23 Nov. 2022 Unbeknownst to Larry, Julia had an affair with Frank and continues to pine for him, even after his mysterious disappearance. Declan Gallagher,, 30 Sep. 2022 That alone has caused tension, as some residents pine for more local control. Rachel Swan, San Francisco Chronicle, 5 Aug. 2022 On September 11, when the Queen’s coffin was transported from Balmoral Castle to the Palace of Holyroodhouse, it was adorned with a wreath featuring dhalias, phlox, white heather, and pine fir from the Balmoral Estate. Norman Vanamee, Town & Country, 19 Sep. 2022 The Queen’s coffin, topped with a wreath of flowers—including dahlias, sweet peas, and pine fir from the Balmoral Estate— and draped in a Scottish flag, passed through places the Queen frequented. Solcyre Burga, Time, 11 Sep. 2022 Across the street from the site is Shockoe Hill Cemetery, where John Marshall is buried, and where a teenage Edgar Allan Poe would pine at the grave of a friend’s beautiful mother. Gregory S. Schneider, Washington Post, 30 Aug. 2022 Woven through its solid malt base are hints of raspberry, freshly tilled soil and pine sap. Peter Rowe, San Diego Union-Tribune, 19 Aug. 2022 The coffin was draped in the Royal Standard of Scotland and a wreath of flowers picked from the Balmoral estate, which included dahlias, sweet peas, phlox, white heather, and pine fir. Quinci Legardye, Harper's BAZAAR, 11 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History



Middle English, from Old English pīn, from Latin pinus; probably akin to Greek pitys pine


Middle English, from Old English pīnian to suffer, from *pīn punishment, from Latin poena — more at pain entry 1

First Known Use


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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of pine was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near pine

Cite this Entry

“Pine.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 verb
pined; pining
: to lose energy, health, or weight through grief, worry, or distress
pine away
: to long for very much


2 of 2 noun
: any of a genus of evergreen trees that have narrow needles for leaves, cones, and wood ranging from very soft to hard and that include valuable timber trees as well as many ornamentals
: the white or yellow wood of a pine
piney adjective
also piny

Medical Definition


1 of 2 noun
: any tree of the genus Pinus


2 of 2 noun
: a dietary deficiency disease of sheep or cattle marked by anemia, malnutrition, and general debility
specifically : such a disease due to cobalt deficiency compare morton mains disease

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