\ ˈtwān How to pronounce twain (audio) \

Definition of twain

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : two
2 : couple, pair



Definition of twain (Entry 2 of 4)

: two especially : two fathoms mark twain



Definition of twain (Entry 3 of 4)

: two


biographical name

Definition of Twain (Entry 4 of 4)

Mark — see clemens

Synonyms for twain

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of twain in a Sentence

Noun I like rap and my parents like country music, and never the twain shall meet in our house.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun America is beset by tribalism, a poisonous partisanship: red camp, blue camp, and never the twain shall meet. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, 22 July 2021 Monday night's season 2 finale of the TNT science fiction show Snowpiercer saw the titular train split in twain, much to the anger of Sean Bean's villainous Mr. Wilford. Clark Collis,, 30 Mar. 2021 Harris, as the nation’s first vice president who is Black, as well as South Asian and female, will be under particular pressure to make the twain meet. Los Angeles Times, 22 Feb. 2021 The twains of the have and have-nots, blacks and whites, privileged and oppressed still vow to never meet. Dallas News, 2 June 2020 Reuters/Will Dunham Few topics arouse the passions of Americans like god and government and whether the twain shall meet. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, 21 Jan. 2020 Apparently, this was that rare case of the twain meeting, as officers went to the woman’s address and soon gave a lost reveler a ride back to Bridgewater State University., 30 Sep. 2019 The Victorian world was cleft in twain, with men on one side, and women on the other. Hugh Ryan, Town & Country, 16 Sep. 2019 None of this legendary twain of body and mind seemed possible on the night of Aug. 11, 2014, not as Verlander sat crying in a tunnel between the dugout and the Tigers’ clubhouse at PNC Park in Pittsburgh. Tom Verducci,, 1 Sep. 2019

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


12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for twain


Middle English, from Old English twēgen — more at two

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

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Cite this Entry

“Twain.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jan. 2022.

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English Language Learners Definition of twain

: two


\ ˈtwān How to pronounce twain (audio) \

Kids Definition of twain

More from Merriam-Webster on twain

Nglish: Translation of twain for Spanish Speakers


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