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

Examples of pine in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Camp Lejeune was built in a sandy pine forest along the North Carolina coast in the early 1940s. Mike Stobbe, Fortune Well, 1 Feb. 2024 The scenes of the Alps-like region are gorgeous, featuring tall pine trees and snowcapped slopes. Andrea Duncan-Mao, Vulture, 28 Jan. 2024 The blended smell of pines, summer grass and wood smoke combined as a kind of camping cologne that only nature can create. Ernie Cowan, San Diego Union-Tribune, 21 Jan. 2024 Longleaf pine restoration is ongoing at the park now, a nod to the pine forest that Bartram saw. Kiley Bense, Smithsonian Magazine, 9 Jan. 2024 This fragrant wax melt features the aroma of pine, spruce, cedarwood, and a touch of cinnamon. Megan Boettcher, Better Homes & Gardens, 6 Dec. 2023 While state forestry services provide classes, Mr. Tribble credits burn associations for the hands-on experience and crews needed to confidently manage the pines. James Pollard, The Christian Science Monitor, 15 Dec. 2023 Start by using one or two pine garlands that will cover the rod once completely fluffed. Claire Hoppe, Better Homes & Gardens, 13 Dec. 2023 The huge mammals can be seen chomping on the lush, green pine trees in a series of images released by the zoo. Adela Suliman, Washington Post, 5 Jan. 2024
But instead of pining over what could've been, Derulo got to work. Daniela Avila, Peoplemag, 23 June 2023 As the human workers pine for home, the humanoid workers increasingly pine to be more than what they’ve been programmed to be. Kate Knibbs, WIRED, 26 Dec. 2022 After years of pining, Iaconetti eventually got the guy: the two wed in 2019 and share a son. Anna Kaufman, USA TODAY, 27 June 2023 Cariuma sneakers frequently rack up long waitlists, most recently ringing in at 77,000 customers who were pining to get their hands on the Oca Low style, according to the brand. Claire Harmeyer, Peoplemag, 14 Mar. 2023 Russia is pining to build on its budding relationship with American conservatives—literally. Prem Thakker, The New Republic, 12 May 2023 Chainsaws and demons, enormously fat dragons, lovelorn video game bosses pining over princesses. Erik Kain, Forbes, 21 Apr. 2023 The front office went until the trade deadline to address their absence of a true backup center, trading for Mason Plumlee, then within two weeks signed Russell Westbrook to fill the lead ballhandler role for whom Lue and others had so vocally pined. Andrew Greif, Los Angeles Times, 15 Apr. 2023 Lastly, using the Love Oil, drench the ponytail and start to wrap the bun pining into place. Alyssa Bailey, ELLE, 27 Feb. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pine.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

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 24 Feb. 2024.

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

More from Merriam-Webster on pine

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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