tenderfoot

noun
ten·​der·​foot | \ ˈten-dər-ˌfu̇t How to pronounce tenderfoot (audio) \
plural tenderfeet\ ˈten-​dər-​ˌfēt How to pronounce tenderfeet (audio) \ also tenderfoots\ ˈten-​dər-​ˌfu̇ts How to pronounce tenderfoots (audio) \

Definition of tenderfoot

1 : an inexperienced beginner : novice a political tenderfoot
2 : a newcomer in a comparatively rough or newly settled region especially : one not hardened to frontier or outdoor life

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of tenderfoot in a Sentence

skateboarders who are tenderfeet will inevitably fall as they learn their first moves

Recent Examples on the Web

But like a tenderfoot scout who confidently builds a campfire only to end up burning down the forest, Kalanick’s loose management — of his staff and himself — paved the way for a cascade of embarrassing scandals by 2014. Los Angeles Times, "Review: Uber’s guerrilla tactics and tech-bro parties chronicled in ‘Super Pumped’," 5 Sep. 2019 The film stars Robert Pattinson as Samuel Alabaster, a foppishly dressed tenderfoot who shows up on the Oregon territory with miniature horse named Butterscotch, looking to hire a preacher (David Zellner) for a wedding. Gary Thompson, Philly.com, "'Damsel': Robert Pattinson neo-western shoots itself in its hipster foot," 27 June 2018

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

First Known Use of tenderfoot

1849, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about tenderfoot

Statistics for tenderfoot

Last Updated

12 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for tenderfoot

The first known use of tenderfoot was in 1849

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for tenderfoot

tenderfoot

noun

English Language Learners Definition of tenderfoot

US, informal
: someone who has just started doing something
: a person who is not used to living in rough conditions or outdoors

More from Merriam-Webster on tenderfoot

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tenderfoot

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for tenderfoot

Comments on tenderfoot

What made you want to look up tenderfoot? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

recurring in steady succession

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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