\ ˈtrē How to pronounce tree (audio) \

Definition of tree

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a woody perennial plant having a single usually elongate main stem generally with few or no branches on its lower part
b : a shrub or herb of arborescent form rose trees a banana tree
2 : something in the form of or resembling a tree: such as
a : a diagram or graph that branches usually from a simple stem or vertex without forming loops or polygons a genealogical tree phylogenetic trees
b : a much-branched system of channels especially in an animal body the vascular tree
3a(1) : a piece of wood (such as a post or pole) usually adapted to a particular use or forming part of a structure or implement
(2) archaic : the cross on which Jesus was crucified
b archaic : gallows


treed; treeing

Definition of tree (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to drive to or up a tree treed by a bull dogs treeing game
b : to put into a position of extreme disadvantage : corner especially : to bring to bay
2 : to furnish or fit (a shoe) with a tree


biographical name
\ ˈtrē How to pronounce Tree (audio) \

Definition of Tree (Entry 3 of 3)

Sir Herbert (Draper) Beerbohm 1853–1917 English actor-manager

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Other Words from tree


treeless \ ˈtrē-​ləs How to pronounce treeless (audio) \ adjective
treelike \ ˈtrē-​ˌlīk How to pronounce treelike (audio) \ adjective

Examples of tree in a Sentence

Noun He chopped down the tree.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Planting trees is a terrific activity for helping the environment and beautifying our neighborhoods. Courtney Mcgee,, "Dumbarton Middle encourages some green thumbs," 19 Nov. 2019 Employees will also contribute 1 million volunteer hours, which can include working at schools, planting trees and sharing knowledge with nonprofits. Roland Li,, "Salesforce to donate $17 million to fight climate change, economic inequality," 17 Nov. 2019 In 1852, the Guinness family (yes, that Guinness family) bought the estate, built new roads, planted trees and increased the land size to 26,000 acres. Jennifer Billock, Smithsonian, "Six Spots Around the World Where You Can Try Your Hand at Falconry," 15 Nov. 2019 Flooding was alleviated by planting trees and collecting rainwater. E.o’k. | Dhaka, The Economist, "How architects are designing buildings for Bangladesh’s tropical monsoon climate," 5 Nov. 2019 That’s likely true; Spring 2020 was the first time major designers incorporated sustainability into their shows and sets, from Dior’s planted trees to Gabriela Hearst’s carbon-neutral show with an electricity-free backstage. Emily Farra, Vogue, "After 15 Years in Business, Phillip Lim is Charting a New Path Toward Sustainability," 31 Oct. 2019 For the newest collection, EDEN, KROST will team up with the Eden Reforestation Projects and will donate a fraction of their proceeds to ERP in order to plant 10,000 trees. Kayleigh Roberts, Harper's BAZAAR, "Selena Gomez Clarifies Her Relationship Status After Being Spotted with Her Ex, Samuel Krost, This Week," 31 Oct. 2019 Taking Root was awarded $10,000 to plant 240 trees through the Energy Saving Trees Program for residents in Norwood, Fairfield and Hamilton. Madeline Mitchell,, "Duke Energy grants over $250,000 to aid in Greater Cincinnati environmental efforts," 22 Oct. 2019 This meant planting indigenous trees and bringing back local species typical to the Aravalis. Bahar Dutt, Quartz India, "Two Indian cities lead the way in transforming concrete jungles into real jungles," 22 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Ecosia is a search engine that donates the bulk of its expendable funds to tree-planting organizations around the globe. Wired, "Want to Plant More Trees? Just Use a Different Search Engine," 8 Nov. 2019 Winds had kicked up and the humidity dropped, increasing the odds that tree branches or other vegetation could knock down power lines and ignite fires. Anne C. Mulkern, Scientific American, "California Tests New Strategies to Prevent Deadly Wildfires," 30 Sep. 2019 But Wolfer said tracking dogs picked up the scent of a single mountain lion at the place where the encounter happened, and the cat that was treed and killed was within a mile or so of the site. oregonlive, "Oregon cougar encounter renews debate about threats from animal," 22 Sep. 2019 The substance, originally tree sap, is collected by bees that combine it with their own saliva and beeswax, turning it into propolis. Christina Butan,, "Kylie Jenner Uses This $14 Throat Spray To Fight Off Colds — and It’s on Amazon," 3 Sep. 2019 Bipedalism set our ancestors apart from the apes, enabling ancient hominins to take advantage of a wider range of habitats than those available to tree climbers. Brian Handwerk, Smithsonian, "A 3.8-Million-Year-Old Skull Puts a New Face on a Little-Known Human Ancestor," 29 Aug. 2019 Another patient, an elderly woman, was allergic to tree pollen, grass pollen, and weed pollen. Lucas Joel, Quartz, "Detroit accidentally caused a pollen crisis by bulldozing the city’s abandoned areas," 15 Aug. 2019 The nonprofit organization also devotes resources to tree planting, replacing asphalt lots with greenspaces, protecting the larger watershed, and improving habitat for fish and other native fauna., "Upcoming workshops help large landowners control invasive plants without chemicals," 1 Aug. 2019 McMurray was severely allergic to tree nuts, which make up a majority of granola bars and protein snacks, and O’Kane is a vegetarian. Deanna Weniger, Twin Cities, "St. Paul team swims and paddles Boundary Waters in mine protest," 27 July 2019

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


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


1575, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for tree


Middle English, from Old English trēow; akin to Old Norse trē tree, Greek drys, Sanskrit dāru wood

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Time Traveler for tree

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for tree

Last Updated

24 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Tree.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 7 December 2019.

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More Definitions for tree


How to pronounce Tree (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of tree

: a usually tall plant that has a thick, wooden stem and many large branches
: a drawing that connects things with lines to show how they are related to each other


\ ˈtrē How to pronounce tree (audio) \

Kids Definition of tree

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a long-lived woody plant that has a single usually tall main stem with few or no branches on its lower part
2 : a plant of treelike form a banana tree
3 : something shaped like a tree a clothes tree

Other Words from tree

treeless \ -​ləs \ adjective
treelike \ -​ˌlīk \ adjective


treed; treeing

Kids Definition of tree (Entry 2 of 2)

: to force to go up a tree A dog treed their cat.


\ ˈtrē How to pronounce tree (audio) \

Medical Definition of tree

: an anatomical system or structure having many branches the vascular tree — see biliary tree, bronchial tree, tracheobronchial tree

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More from Merriam-Webster on tree

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tree

Spanish Central: Translation of tree

Nglish: Translation of tree for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of tree for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about tree

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