thin

adjective
\ ˈthin \
thinner; thinnest

Definition of thin

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : having little extent from one surface to its opposite thin paper
b : measuring little in cross section or diameter thin rope
2 : not dense in arrangement or distribution thin hair
3 : not well fleshed : lean
4a : more fluid or rarefied than normal thin air
b : having less than the usual number : scanty thin attendance
c : few in number : scarce
d : scantily supplied
e : characterized by a paucity of bids or offerings a thin market
5a : lacking substance or strength thin broth a thin plot
b of a soil : infertile, poor
6a : flimsy, unconvincing a thin disguise
b : disappointingly poor or hard had a thin time of it
7 : somewhat feeble, shrill, and lacking in resonance a thin voice
8 : lacking in intensity or brilliance thin light
9 : lacking sufficient photographic density or contrast
thin on the ground

thin

verb
thinned; thinning

Definition of thin (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to make thin or thinner:
a : to reduce in thickness or depth : attenuate
b : to make less dense or viscous
c : dilute, weaken
d : to cause to lose flesh thinned by weeks of privation
e : to reduce in number or bulk

intransitive verb

1 : to become thin or thinner
2 : to become weak

thin

adverb
thinner; thinnest

Definition of thin (Entry 3 of 3)

: in a thin manner : thinly used especially in combination thin-cladthin-flowing

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Other Words from thin

Adjective

thinly adverb
thinness \ ˈthin-​nəs \ noun
thinnish \ ˈthi-​nish \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for thin

Synonyms: Adjective

bony (also boney), fatless, lean, lithe, skinny, slender, slim, spare, svelte

Synonyms: Verb

adulterate, cut, dilute, extend, lace, sophisticate, water down, weaken

Antonyms: Adjective

chubby, corpulent, fat, gross, obese, overweight, plump, portly, rotund, tubby

Antonyms: Verb

enrich, fortify, richen, strengthen

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Choose the Right Synonym for thin

Adjective

thin, slender, slim, slight, tenuous mean not thick, broad, abundant, or dense. thin implies comparatively little extension between surfaces or in diameter, or it may imply lack of substance, richness, or abundance. thin wire a thin soup slender implies leanness or spareness often with grace and good proportion. the slender legs of a Sheraton chair slim applies to slenderness that suggests fragility or scantiness. a slim volume of poetry a slim chance slight implies smallness as well as thinness. a slight build tenuous implies extreme thinness, sheerness, or lack of substance and firmness. a tenuous thread

Examples of thin in a Sentence

Adjective

a thin coating of dust pizza with a thin crust a thin slice of ham a thin stand of trees

Verb

He added a little more water to thin the gravy. The haze thinned in the late afternoon. His face has been thinned by illness.

Adverb

She sliced the cheese thin.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

For one, while Frozen was celebrated as the rare Disney movie in which the princesses save themselves/each other (rather than being rescued by a prince), both Anna and Elsa, for all of their moxie, are absurdly and almost disturbingly thin. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, "You’re Not Crazy—Disney Princesses Have Insanely Small Waists (and Looking at Them Is Not Great for Kids)," 17 Jan. 2019 The Spectre x360 15 (2017) weighed about 4.65 pounds and measured 16mm thin. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "HP Spectre x360 15 (2018) hands on: HP's convertible notebook leaps to six cores," 23 Oct. 2018 Stacking chips lets Intel squeeze out more performance without increasing the overall die space—a boon for thin-and-light laptops. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, "6 important CES 2019 reveals and trends that PC enthusiasts need to know about," 11 Jan. 2019 The ability of the membrane to get as thin and light as three grams per square meter (the average is usually 20 grams) allows the company to increase the durability of the face fabric, according to The North Face. Tim Newcomb, Popular Mechanics, "The North Face's New Fabric Is Waterproof, Breathable, and Brought to You by Science," 8 Jan. 2019 This will ensure your philanthropy isn’t stretched too thin and your dollar is most effective. Linda Davis Taylor, SELF, "Beyond Giving Tuesday: How to Make a Giving Plan and Why You Need One," 26 Nov. 2018 Using paring knife, cut around core to remove; slice core thin and reserve. Tan Vinh, The Seattle Times, "Fall into this Cook’s Illustrated’s recipe: creamy cauliflower soup," 16 Oct. 2018 Vans’ case relies on pretty thin trademark protections for fashion There’s plenty of precedent for trademark infringement lawsuits in fashion. Kaitlyn Tiffany, Vox, "Can Vans really sue Target for a cheap look-alike of its most famous skater shoe?," 26 Dec. 2018 Immediately after having a baby is not the best time to spread yourself too thin. Marie Tillman, Marie Claire, "Why I Started My Business While on Maternity Leave," 13 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

But now the spreads have stopped narrowing because profit margins have thinned. Peter Grant, WSJ, "Rising Borrowing Costs Spell Trouble for Commercial Real Estate," 18 Dec. 2018 The shelves have also thinned due to our warming planet, scientists think. Jen Christensen, CNN, "Scientists lay out how to save a melting Antarctica -- and the grim future if we don't," 13 June 2018 Online shopping may have thinned the once-rampant Black Friday crowds, but Black Friday isn’t going anywhere yet. Gaby Del Valle, Vox, "Black Friday is longer, and tamer, than ever," 20 Nov. 2018 Her departure thins the ranks of female CEOs running S&P 500 companies and comes at a time when Pepsi’s North American beverage unit is stagnating amid a general decline in soda consumption. Craig Giammona, The Seattle Times, "Pepsi’s first female CEO to end 12-year run, replaced by insider," 6 Aug. 2018 The fairways that were 65 yards wide on average were thinned to 41 yards on average. Steve Dimeglio, USA TODAY, "Shinnecock Hills is easy on the eyes, tough on the golfers for the U.S. Open," 13 June 2018 After about an hour, the gun-rights rally ended and the crowd thinned. Hunter Woodall, kansascity, "Kobach tells national walkout students at gun-rights rally to stay in class | The Kansas City Star," 20 Apr. 2018 Real carbon banking would consist of thinning the trees and using the resultant product to build homes and other structures which create more permanent carbon banks. WSJ, "Bad Forest Management Robs Those Green Carbon Banks," 20 Aug. 2018 Decades ago, the number of osprey in the United States took a significant hit due to the use of the insecticide DDT, which thinned their eggshells. Eugene Register-guard, OregonLive.com, "Webcam at UO offers bird's-eye view of osprey nest," 5 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

Resources at many university counseling centers are stretched thin, forcing students to wait weeks for an appointment. Aneri Pattani, chicagotribune.com, "College students train to help peers at risk for suicide, depression and more," 12 July 2018 Resources at many university counseling centers are stretched thin, forcing students to wait weeks for an appointment. Aneri Pattani, chicagotribune.com, "College students train to help peers at risk for suicide, depression and more," 12 July 2018 Resources at many university counseling centers are stretched thin, forcing students to wait weeks for an appointment. Aneri Pattani, chicagotribune.com, "College students train to help peers at risk for suicide, depression and more," 12 July 2018 Resources at many university counseling centers are stretched thin, forcing students to wait weeks for an appointment. Aneri Pattani, chicagotribune.com, "College students train to help peers at risk for suicide, depression and more," 12 July 2018 Relievers Ryan Meisinger and Paul Fry will join the Orioles on Friday, according to an industry source, providing cover for a bullpen that's been stretched thin over the last week. Jon Meoli, baltimoresun.com, "Orioles to add relievers Ryan Meisinger, Paul Fry to bullpen," 29 June 2018 Resources at many university counseling centers are stretched thin, forcing students to wait weeks for an appointment. Aneri Pattani, chicagotribune.com, "College students train to help peers at risk for suicide, depression and more," 12 July 2018 Resources at many university counseling centers are stretched thin, forcing students to wait weeks for an appointment. Aneri Pattani, chicagotribune.com, "College students train to help peers at risk for suicide, depression and more," 12 July 2018 France’s army is stretched thin, distracted by commitments to its former colonies in Africa. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "America Pitches Its Potential Defense Plan for Europe," 7 June 2018

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

Adjective

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

Verb

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

Adverb

13th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for thin

Adjective

Middle English thinne, from Old English thynne; akin to Old High German dunni thin, Latin tenuis thin, tenēre to hold, tendere to stretch, Greek teinein

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Statistics for thin

Last Updated

8 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for thin

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

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More Definitions for thin

thin

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of thin

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: having a small distance between the top and bottom or front and back surfaces : not thick
: not having a lot of extra flesh on the body : not fat
: not growing closely together : not growing in a large amount

thin

verb

English Language Learners Definition of thin (Entry 2 of 3)

: to become less crowded, close together, or full
: to make (a liquid) less thick by adding water or some other liquid to it
of a person's hair : to become less thick as more hairs fall out over time

thin

adverb

English Language Learners Definition of thin (Entry 3 of 3)

: in a way that makes thin pieces, layers, etc.

thin

adjective
\ ˈthin \
thinner; thinnest

Kids Definition of thin

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : having little body fat
2 : having little size from one surface to its opposite : not thick a thin board
3 : having the parts not close together thin hair
4 : flowing very easily a thin soup
5 : having less than the usual number Attendance was thin.
6 : not very convincing a thin excuse
7 : somewhat weak or high a thin voice
8 : having less oxygen than normal thin air

Other Words from thin

thinly adverb
thinness noun

thin

verb
thinned; thinning

Kids Definition of thin (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make or become smaller in thickness or number The crowd was beginning to thin.

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More from Merriam-Webster on thin

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with thin

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for thin

Spanish Central: Translation of thin

Nglish: Translation of thin for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of thin for Arabic Speakers

Comments on thin

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