1 of 2

noun (1)

ten·​ter ˈten-tər How to pronounce tenter (audio)
: a frame or endless track with hooks or clips along two sides that is used for drying and stretching cloth
archaic : tenterhook


2 of 2

noun (2)

: one who lives in or occupies a tent

Examples of tenter in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
This campground has a more communal feel than others in the park, as tenters are required to walk in and find space. Emily Pennington, Condé Nast Traveler, 16 Feb. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'tenter.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Noun (1)

Middle English teyntour, tentour, tenture, probably borrowed from Medieval Latin tentōrium "tent, tabernacle, canopy, frame for stretching skins or cloth," going back to Latin, "shelter made of skins or cloth, tent," from ten-, stem in nominal derivation of tendere "to extend outward, stretch" + -tōrium, suffix of places, from neuter of -tōrius, deverbal adjective suffix — more at tender entry 3

Noun (2)

tent entry 1 or tent entry 2 + -er entry 2

First Known Use

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1846, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of tenter was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near tenter

Cite this Entry

“Tenter.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tenter. Accessed 8 Dec. 2023.

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