tan

verb
\ ˈtan How to pronounce tan (audio) \
tanned; tanning

Definition of tan

 (Entry 1 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to make (skin) tan especially by exposure to the sun
2a : to convert (hide) into leather by treatment with an infusion of tannin-rich bark or other agent of similar effect
b : to convert (protein) to leather or a similar substance
3 : thrash, whip

intransitive verb

: to get or become tan

tan

adjective
tanner; tannest

Definition of tan (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : of the color tan
2 : of, relating to, or used for tan or tanning

tan

noun

Definition of tan (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : a brown color imparted to the skin especially by exposure to the sun
2 : a light yellowish brown
3 tans plural : tan-colored articles of clothing
4 : a tanning material or its active agent (such as tannin)

Definition of tan (Entry 4 of 4)

tangent

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Examples of tan in a Sentence

Adjective I can't believe how tan she is! a horse with tan markings Noun I got a tan on my vacation.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Two or three yolks (no egg whites included) are enough to tan something small like a rabbit pelt. Tim Macwelch, Outdoor Life, 24 Dec. 2020 The brain of every game animal contains the perfect volume and balance of conditioning oils to tan its own hide. Tim Macwelch, Outdoor Life, 24 Dec. 2020 The materials that go into this bag are Leather Working Group Gold-certified, meaning the leather is tanned in the highest level of compliance with sustainable measures, such as energy and water consumption, waste management, and effluent treatment. Camryn Rabideau, USA TODAY, 21 Apr. 2020 Sicilian blood works like the sun, tanning the flesh from the inside out. Lisa Taddeo, Harper's Magazine, 30 Mar. 2020 Perma-tanned and with long, floppy hair, Waugh developed a reputation among some Deutsche Bank colleagues for being a bit of a lightweight. New York Times, 4 Feb. 2020 The gunmen fled in a a silver or tan four-door sedan, driven by another man. Houston Chronicle, 13 Feb. 2020 Ammonia is used as a cleaning product, a dye and tanning agent, and industrial fertilizer. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, 24 Feb. 2020 The 31-year-old surfer is tanned and freckled, his hair gelled back to give that permanent ocean-wet vibe. Brittany Meiling, San Diego Union-Tribune, 14 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The chicken should be falling off the bone and become quite tan as well. Washington Post, 9 Mar. 2021 There's a tan-colored fence surrounding the vast, mostly empty, cemetery. AZCentral.com, 17 Dec. 2020 Three men wearing only tan-colored briefs kneel on the stage. Tim Diovanni, Dallas News, 12 Nov. 2020 Trademark farmer tans and sock line tan lines – big time! Susan Glaser, cleveland, 3 May 2020 One of the men — who wore a black half-nose mask with black sunglasses, a black leather style jacket, camo pants, desert tan military style boots, and black gloves — worked the safe, deputies said. Howard Cohen, miamiherald, 4 June 2019 Alani, in chains and dressed in a tan jail outfit, did not speak in court. Curt Anderson, BostonGlobe.com, 4 Mar. 2020 The groom wore tan dress shorts and a crisp shirt with a purple orchid boutonniere, creating a casual and informal vibe. New York Times, 20 Dec. 2019 Alani, shackled and wearing tan jail clothing, said through an Arabic interpreter. USA TODAY, 20 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun With four reclining positions, this option is ideal for poolside hangs or perfecting your tan in the backyard. Kelsey Mulvey, Forbes, 31 May 2021 The secret to enhancing a golden tan is to top with an illuminating, hydrating oil. Bianca Salonga, Forbes, 27 Apr. 2021 The suspect is a tan, White or light-skinned Hispanic man in is late 40s or early 50s, according to a news release issued Thursday by the San Diego Police Department. Phil Diehl, San Diego Union-Tribune, 1 Apr. 2021 Behind them, the blues of the sky and ocean blend and merge into the light tan of the sand, in a backdrop no modern-day Instagram filter could ever re-create. Tiffini Theisen, orlandosentinel.com, 7 May 2021 Video surveillance showed White’s tan-and-gold pickup parked beside the business for three hours, Portland Officer Nicole Kennedy wrote in police reports. oregonlive, 27 Apr. 2021 The truck's 125-hp V-6 puts some people off, but a few of us like the idea of getting a nice tan while driving to Home Depot. Tony Quiroga, Car and Driver, 23 Apr. 2021 Even the restraints used to tie her to her lounge chair are a soft-tan color. Jessica Goldstein, Vulture, 1 Apr. 2021 The finished recreation depicts KV55 as a tan-skinned male with a prominent jaw and almond-shaped eyes. Isis Davis-marks, Smithsonian Magazine, 29 Mar. 2021

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

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2a

Adjective

1586, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Noun

1674, in the meaning defined at sense 4

History and Etymology for tan

Verb

Middle English tannen, from Anglo-French tanner, from Medieval Latin tannare, from tanum, tannum tanbark

Noun

French, tanbark, from Old French, from Medieval Latin tanum

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Time Traveler for tan

Time Traveler

The first known use of tan was in the 13th century

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Statistics for tan

Cite this Entry

“Tan.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tan. Accessed 14 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for tan

tan

verb

English Language Learners Definition of tan

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to cause (skin) to become darker especially from being exposed to the sun's rays
: to become darker especially from being exposed to the sun's rays
: to change (the skin of an animal) into leather by a chemical process

tan

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of tan (Entry 2 of 3)

: having skin that has been made darker by being exposed to the sun's rays
: having a light brown color

tan

noun

English Language Learners Definition of tan (Entry 3 of 3)

: a browning of the skin that is caused by the sun's rays
: a light brown color

tan

verb
\ ˈtan How to pronounce tan (audio) \
tanned; tanning

Kids Definition of tan

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : to change animal hide into leather especially by soaking in a tannin solution
2 : to make or become brown in color She doesn't tan. Instead, she gets a sunburn.

tan

adjective
tanner; tannest

Kids Definition of tan (Entry 2 of 3)

: of a light yellowish brown color

tan

noun

Kids Definition of tan (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a brown color given to the skin by the sun or wind
2 : a light yellowish brown : the color of sand

tan

verb
\ ˈtan How to pronounce tan (audio) \
tanned; tanning

Medical Definition of tan

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to make (skin) tan especially by exposure to the sun

intransitive verb

: to get or become tanned

tan

noun

Medical Definition of tan (Entry 2 of 2)

: a brown color imparted to the skin by exposure to the sun or wind

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