thing

noun
\ ˈthiŋ \

Definition of thing

1 : an object or entity not precisely designated or capable of being designated use this thing
2a : an inanimate object distinguished from a living being
b : a separate and distinct individual quality, fact, idea, or usually entity
c : the concrete entity as distinguished from its appearances
d : a spatial entity
3 : individual not a living thing in sight
4a : a matter of concern : affair many things to do
b things plural : state of affairs in general or within a specified or implied sphere things are improving
c : a particular state of affairs : situation look at this thing another way
d : event, circumstance Meeting her was a wonderful thing.
5a things plural : possessions, effects pack your things
b : whatever may be possessed or owned or be the object of a right
c : an article of clothing not a thing to wear
d things plural : equipment or utensils especially for a particular purpose bring the tea things
6a : deed, act, accomplishment do great things
b : a product of work or activity likes to build things
c : the aim of effort or activity the thing is to get well
7a : something (such as an activity) that makes a strong appeal to the individual : forte, specialty letting students do their own thingNewsweek I think travelling is very much a novelist's thing— Philip Larkin
b : a mild obsession or phobia has a thing about driving also : the object of such an obsession or phobia
8a : detail, point checks every little thing
b : a material or substance of a specified kind avoid fatty things
9a : idea, notion says the first thing he thinks of
b : a piece of news or information couldn't get a thing out of him
c : a spoken or written observation or point
10 : the proper or fashionable way of behaving, talking, or dressing used with the

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Examples of thing in a Sentence

What is that thing on the floor? He is good at making things out of clay. My doctor told me to avoid fatty things like donuts and potato chips. We must respect all living things. Birth is a miraculous thing. It was the worst thing that could have happened. That sunset was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. Let's just forget about the whole thing and move on. The one thing I hate most is being lied to. Are all your things packed?
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Recent Examples on the Web

Custom wrapped convertible @bmw with custom interior for our talented friend @itsjojosiwa A couple of hours later, Justin commented on their page and things kind of went off from there. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Justin Bieber Came For Jojo Siwa On Instagram and Her Response Was Epic," 31 Dec. 2018 But the identities of the singers weren't the only thing that inspired Toybina's costumes, which somehow only took two months to make. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Every 'Masked Singer' Fan Has Been Overlooking This Major Clue," 23 Jan. 2019 Here are the most important things young women need to know about love — and how to explain them. 1. Jenna Birch, Woman's Day, "11 Love Lessons Every Mother Should Teach Her Daughter," 23 Jan. 2019 Justice is about how much ladies get paid…. Justice is about making sure that being polite is not the same thing as being quiet. De Elizabeth, Glamour, "Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Speaks at 2019 Women's March in New York City," 20 Jan. 2019 Nvidia’s move could be seen as a burn on FreeSync since only 12 of 400 monitors are up to its standards, but this is a good thing for gamers. Gordon Mah Ung, PCWorld, "Nvidia reveals RTX laptop GPUs, FreeSync support for GeForce graphics cards," 7 Jan. 2019 Damn Right We’re Interested Award 99 Percent Invisible’s Avery Trufelman launched her capsule podcast Articles of Interest—and the series on the social history of clothing was the best thing to stream through our earbuds all year. Mark Lamster, Curbed, "2018 in architecture: The good, the bad, and the urbanism," 27 Dec. 2018 Upgrading the home is basically the first thing that Silicon Valley’s people with money do — and those already with homes will buy second spots in places like Tahoe. Theodore Schleifer, Recode, "The 2019 IPO class headlined by Uber will create a ton of new wealth. Will the billions go to mansions or missions?," 20 Dec. 2018 That’s because doing things like guaranteeing a minimum salary across the board or offering generous severance packages can be viewed as taking cash out of business operations. Shirin Ghaffary, Recode, "As digital media companies brace for change, unions try to cushion the blow," 26 Dec. 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4a

History and Etymology for thing

Middle English, from Old English, thing, assembly; akin to Old High German ding thing, assembly, Goth theihs time

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Statistics for thing

Last Updated

11 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for thing

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

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More Definitions for thing

thing

noun
\ ˈthiŋ \

Kids Definition of thing

1 : an act or matter that is or is to be done I have a thing or two to take care of. You did the right thing.
2 : something that exists and can be talked about Nouns name people and things. Say the first thing that pops into your mind. How do you work this thing?
3 things plural : personal possessions Pack your things, we're leaving.
4 : detail entry 1 sense 2 He checks every little thing.
5 things plural : existing conditions and circumstances Things are improving.
6 : event sense 1 The accident was a terrible thing.
7 : deed entry 1 sense 1, achievement, act We expect great things from them.
8 : a piece of clothing not a thing to wear
9 : what is needed or wanted It's just the thing for a cold.
10 : an action or interest especially that someone enjoys very much Music is my thing.
11 : individual entry 2 sense 1 “I can't stand reptiles. Get that thing away from me!”— Judy Blume, Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing
12 : a spoken or written observation or point Mrs. Kemp was shocked. “What a thing to say about your little friend.”— Beverly Cleary, Ramona Quimby

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More from Merriam-Webster on thing

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with thing

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for thing

Spanish Central: Translation of thing

Nglish: Translation of thing for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of thing for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about thing

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