tal·​low | \ ˈta-(ˌ)lō How to pronounce tallow (audio) \

Definition of tallow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the white nearly tasteless solid rendered fat of cattle and sheep used chiefly in soap, candles, and lubricants


tallowed; tallowing; tallows

Definition of tallow (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to grease or smear with tallow

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Other Words from tallow


tallowy \ ˈta-​lə-​wē How to pronounce tallow (audio) \ adjective

Examples of tallow in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Butchertown, just south of Dogpatch, was home to tanneries, fertilizer plants, and tallow works as well—factories housing processes too fetid and violent for the city center, which fed it nonetheless. Kate Aronoff, The New Republic, 29 Sep. 2021 Chinese tallow freezes back every hard winter and has lots of insect and disease problems. Howard Garrett, Dallas News, 20 Sep. 2021 The types of trees that are showing damage from the storm include lacebark elm, Texas ash, Chinese tallow, and red oak. Teri Webster, Dallas News, 6 July 2021 For a recap of the freeze damage, Texas lost large numbers of pittosporum, loropetalum, ligustrum, loquat, Chinese tallow and Arizona ash. Howard Garrett, Dallas News, 21 June 2021 This index includes copper and several other commodities that don’t have associated futures markets: steel scrap, tallow, burlap, print cloth, etc. John Mauldin, Forbes, 10 June 2021 People with less compelling stories are sending me photos of their Chinese tallow trees sending out new growth. Neil Sperry, San Antonio Express-News, 4 June 2021 Once a year, the ranchos rounded them up, slaughtered them, and sold the tallow and hides to the Yankee trading ships hovering off the coast. Los Angeles Times, 4 May 2021 To make wild game stock: submerge bones and a handful of carrots, onions, and celery, in water and simmer until the liquid has reduced by half, then strain, chill, and skim any fat or tallow from the surface. Cosmo Genova, Field & Stream, 24 Feb. 2021

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


14th century, in the meaning defined above


15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for tallow


Middle English talgh, talow; akin to Middle Dutch talch tallow

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Time Traveler for tallow

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near tallow



tallow bayberry

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Statistics for tallow

Last Updated

8 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Tallow.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tallow. Accessed 22 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for tallow



English Language Learners Definition of tallow

: fat from cattle and sheep that is used chiefly to make candles and soap


tal·​low | \ ˈta-lō How to pronounce tallow (audio) \

Kids Definition of tallow

: a white solid fat of cattle and sheep used mostly in making candles and soap


tal·​low | \ ˈtal-(ˌ)ō, -ə(-w) How to pronounce tallow (audio) \

Medical Definition of tallow

: the white nearly tasteless solid rendered fat of cattle and sheep which is used chiefly in soap, margarine, candles, and lubricants and of which the form obtained from domestic sheep (Ovis aries) is used in pharmacy in ointments and cerates

More from Merriam-Webster on tallow

Nglish: Translation of tallow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about tallow


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