thim·​ble ˈthim-bəl How to pronounce thimble (audio)
: a pitted cap or cover worn on the finger to push the needle in sewing
: a grooved ring of thin metal used to fit in a spliced loop in a rope as protection from chafing
: a lining (as of metal) for an opening (as in a roof or wall) through which a stovepipe or chimney passes

Examples of thimble in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Said to be beloved by the fairies, the bluebells have a number of delightful nicknames: witches’ thimbles, lady’s nightcap, harebells, fairy flowers, crow’s toes. Emily Matchar, Smithsonian Magazine, 26 Jan. 2024 Throw in chalk, a measuring tape, a thimble, and some color pins. Neeti Mehra, Treehugger, 13 Sep. 2023 Sewing equipment such as knitting needles, patterns, pins, scissors, sewing machines, sewing needles, tape measures, thimbles, buttons, fabric, lace, thread, yarn and zippers. Victoria Moorwood, The Enquirer, 28 July 2023 One of the participants, Glenn Nolan, a member of the Cree Nation in Ontario, instructed everyone to take a thimble’s worth of tobacco and offer it to the river for guidance along the way—a Cree tradition. Max Ufberg, Smithsonian Magazine, 16 May 2023 Just 20 years ago, no one could have imagined what scientists know two decades later about humanity’s deep past, let alone how much knowledge could be extracted from a thimble of dirt, a scrape of dental plaque or satellites in space. Elizabeth Sawchuk and Mary Prendergast, Discover Magazine, 30 Dec. 2019 But watch the pea under Oxburgh's thimble. Keith Kloor, Discover Magazine, 17 May 2010 Meanwhile, the rest of the family is saddled with thimbles, wheelbarrows, and a single unlaced shoe. Evan Waite, The New Yorker, 28 Mar. 2023 Grab a thimble of habanero salsa for more heat., 6 May 2021 See More

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

Word History


Middle English thymel, thymbyl, from Old English thȳmel covering for the thumb, from thūma thumb

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near thimble

Cite this Entry

“Thimble.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


thim·​ble ˈthim-bəl How to pronounce thimble (audio)
: a cap or cover used in sewing to protect the finger that pushes the needle

More from Merriam-Webster on thimble

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