taut

1 of 3

adjective

1
a
: having no give or slack : tightly drawn
a taut rope
b
: high-strung, tense
taut nerves
2
a
: kept in proper order or condition
a taut ship
b(1)
: not loose or flabby
taut skin
(2)
: marked by economy of structure and detail
a taut story
tautly adverb
tautness noun

taut

2 of 3

verb

tauted; tauting; tauts

transitive verb

Scotland
: mat, tangle

taut-

3 of 3

combining form

variants or tauto-
: same
tautomerism
tautonym

Example Sentences

Adjective The rope was drawn taut. The book is a taut thriller.
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
Its steering is nicely weighted, its body motions are controlled, and its ride is taut. Eric Stafford, Car and Driver, 21 Jan. 2023 And the audience that Andor is really catering to—people who love a taut thriller—are understandably suspicious of cinematic universe content with a patchy track record. Eliana Dockterman, Time, 23 Nov. 2022 The film, directed by Maria Schrader, is a taut thriller that retraces Twohey and Kantor's dogged investigation, and the result is a moving tribute to both the power of journalism and the many subjects who spoke out against Weinstein. Devan Coggan, EW.com, 19 Nov. 2022 The top-end power builds at high speeds, too, but more importantly, numerous suspension revisions create a low center of gravity and a taut yet supple ride that this now-sporty four-door always deserved. Michael Van Runkle, Robb Report, 2 Dec. 2022 The immediate effects are visible—after application, my skin looked and felt supple and taut, thanks to ingredients like squalane and peach tree leaf extract, which restore moisture and improve skin texture. Ariana Yaptangco, Glamour, 21 Oct. 2022 Over tea and toast at the Cafe Cluny in the West Village of Manhattan, Linda Rodin lifted her palms to her face and pulled her features taut. Ruth La Ferla, New York Times, 19 Oct. 2022 The first half is taut, high-concept storytelling that gives the audience no room to relax; the back half is a loopy, makeup-heavy monster movie. David Sims, The Atlantic, 4 Nov. 2022 In her taut, 143-page manifesto, Blair lays out 28 potent, plain-spoken supporting arguments calling for greater male responsibility. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, 18 Oct. 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Adjective

Middle English tought, perhaps from tought, toughth fierce, tough, alteration of tough tough

Verb

origin unknown

Combining form

Late Latin, from Greek, from tauto the same, contraction of to auto

First Known Use

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a(1)

Verb

1721, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of taut was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near taut

Cite this Entry

“Taut.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/taut. Accessed 2 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

taut

adjective
ˈtȯt
1
a
: drawn to the limit : not slack
taut rope
b
: high-strung, tense
taut nerves
2
: kept in proper order or condition
a taut ship
tautly adverb
tautness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on taut

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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