tome

play
noun \ˈtōm\

Definition of tome

  1. 1 :  book; especially :  a large or scholarly book

  2. 2 :  a volume forming part of a larger work

tome was our Word of the Day on 01/07/2012. Hear the podcast!

Examples of tome in a sentence

  1. a long tome on European history

  2. picked up a thick tome on the Roman Empire at a used book store

Did You Know?

Tome comes from Latin tomus, which comes from Greek tomos, meaning "section" or "roll of papyrus." Tomos comes from the Greek verb temnein, which means "to cut." In ancient times, some of the longest scrolls of papyrus occasionally were divided into sections. When it was first used in English in the 16th century, tome was a book that was a part of a multi-volume work. Now a tome is most often simply a large and often ponderous book.

Origin and Etymology of tome

Middle French or Latin; Middle French, from Latin tomus, from Greek tomos section, roll of papyrus, tome, from temnein to cut; akin to Middle Irish tamnaid he lops, Polish ciąć to cut, and perhaps to Latin tondēre to shear


First Known Use: 1519


-tome

noun combining form

Definition of -tome

  1. 1 :  part :  segment myotome

  2. 2 :  cutting instrument microtome

Origin and Etymology of -tome

Greek tomos


TOME Defined for English Language Learners

tome

play
noun \ˈtōm\

Definition of tome for English Language Learners

  • : a very large, thick book


TOME Defined for Kids

tome

play
noun \ˈtōm\

Definition of tome for Students

  1. :  a big thick book



Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

feeling or affected by lethargy

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

  • ludwig-richter-spring-has-arrived
  • Which is a synonym of upbraid?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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

TAKE THE QUIZ