\ ˈten How to pronounce ten (audio) \

Definition of ten

1 : a number that is one more than nine — see Table of Numbers
2 : the 10th in a set or series wears a ten
3 : something having 10 units or members
4 : a 10-dollar bill
5 : one deserving the highest rating specifically : an exceptionally attractive person

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Other Words from ten

ten adjective
ten pronoun, plural in construction

Synonyms & Antonyms for ten



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Examples of ten in a Sentence

“What time is it” “It's ten.” promised me that she would fix me up with a ten
Recent Examples on the Web The new coronavirus raging through Asia has killed hundreds of people and infected tens of thousands, most of them in Wuhan, China, the city where the outbreak is believed to have originated. oregonlive, "Oregon coronavirus scare is a false alarm, health department says," 7 Feb. 2020 And then there are the tens of thousands who, overnight, found their lives upended and dreams dashed by the stroke of a presidential pen. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, "Trump scapegoats almost a quarter of Africa’s population," 5 Feb. 2020 These places include ‘culturally modified’ trees that have been altered for traditional uses, as well as rock art and engravings, stone-tool sites and grinding stones, some of which may be tens of thousands of years old. John Pickrell, Scientific American, "Thousands of Ancient Aboriginal Sites Probably Damaged in Australian Fires," 27 Jan. 2020 Through the show’s broadcast, viewers at home saw their favorite musicians dressed to the nines, tens, and elevens (some peacocking in meme-making looks). Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "All of the Photos From Inside the 2020 Grammy Awards," 27 Jan. 2020 This could entail tens of thousands of dollars in penalties and lost income. Kathryn Jean Lopez, National Review, "Please, Can We Pause for the Death of a Wife and Mother of Two?," 20 Jan. 2020 In many magazines and newspapers, podcast coverage is limited to top-ten lists of favorite shows. Hugh Eakin, Harper's magazine, "Selective Hearing," 19 Jan. 2020 An Etowah County woman is accused of embezzling tens of thousands of dollars from an Attalla company. Carol Robinson | Crobinson@al.com, al, "Employee accused of embezzling $168,000 from Etowah County company," 18 Jan. 2020 Eventually, the company hopes to fly tens of thousands of the spacecraft. Tim Fernholz, Quartz, "SpaceX aims to appease astronomers in latest Starlink satellite launch," 6 Jan. 2020

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

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

History and Etymology for ten

Middle English, going back to Old English tīen (West Saxon), tēn, going back to Germanic *tehun (whence also Old Frisian tiān, tiēn "ten," Old Saxon tehan, Old High German zehan, Old Norse tíu, Gothic taihun), going back to Indo-European *deḱm̥, whence also Old Irish deich "ten," Welsh deg, Latin decem, Old Church Slavic desętĭ, Lithuanian dẽšimt, Albanian dhjetë, Greek déka, Armenian tasn, Tocharian A śäk, Tocharian B śak, Avestan dasa, Sanskrit daśa

Note: The Slavic, Baltic, and perhaps Albanian forms are derived from the ordinal base *deḱm̥-t-.

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Time Traveler for ten

Time Traveler

The first known use of ten was before the 12th century

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Statistics for ten

Last Updated

10 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Ten.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ten. Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for ten


How to pronounce ten (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ten

: the number 10
: the tenth in a set or series
: ten o'clock
\ ˈten How to pronounce ten (audio) \

Kids Definition of ten

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: being one more than nine



Kids Definition of ten (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : one more than nine : two times five : 10
2 : the tenth in a set or series

Medical Definition of TEN

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More from Merriam-Webster on ten

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ten

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with ten

Spanish Central: Translation of ten

Nglish: Translation of ten for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ten for Arabic Speakers

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