tree

1 of 2

noun

1
a
: 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
3
a(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
4
treeless adjective
treelike adjective

tree

2 of 2

verb

treed; treeing

transitive verb

1
a
: 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

Example Sentences

Noun He chopped down the tree.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Copal is a sacred tree to our village as the resin used to purify and bless the environment. Omaid Homayun, Forbes, 23 Jan. 2023 Their ceremony took place under a gigantic oak tree, with rolling hills of blazing fall foliage as a backdrop. Elise Taylor, Vogue, 23 Jan. 2023 Hernandez and Wise are handling funeral arrangements for Ingram, who had shared with them her wish to have a green burial underneath a tree. Jireh Deng, Los Angeles Times, 23 Jan. 2023 Children could take part in face-painting, balloon-twisting and placing a red ribbon on a wishing tree in hopes their wish will come true with good fortune this year, according to the mall. Karie Angell Luc, Chicago Tribune, 23 Jan. 2023 Being stuck in a tree limits your chances of getting a shot. Adam Moore, Outdoor Life, 23 Jan. 2023 Crouching under the shade of a 10-foot lemon tree, at the edge of a citrus orchard that spans hundreds of acres, Wicks is here for water. Brett Simpson, The Atlantic, 23 Jan. 2023 According to police, her car left the roadway around 5:30 a.m. on Alabama 247 before striking an embankment and a tree. Sarah Swetlik | Sswetlik@al.com, al, 22 Jan. 2023 By the time firefighters arrived, the fire had consumed the house and spread to a pine tree and an outbuilding, Shoots said. David Hernandez, San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 Jan. 2023
Verb
Bitters are liquors flavored with a combination of herbs and other plants — sometimes even tree bark and roots. Eric Betz, Discover Magazine, 7 Oct. 2020 Scientists called dendrochronologists focus on assigning calendar years to tree rings and interpreting data within those rings. Jared Farmer, Smithsonian Magazine, 3 Jan. 2023 People who are not sensitive or allergic to tree nuts can still eat the cookies. Chris Smith, BGR, 1 Nov. 2022 People allergic to tree nuts will develop symptoms after eating products containing these ingredients. Chris Smith, BGR, 27 Oct. 2022 Not only is the money tree a beautiful addition to any home style, it's also been found to bring luck and good fortune to its owners. Cailey Lindberg, Good Housekeeping, 13 Oct. 2022 Manzanita is a large group of evergreen shrubs, from groundcover to tree height, and varying widths. Viveka Neveln, Better Homes & Gardens, 10 Oct. 2022 Of those, some people have been found to also be allergic to tree nuts like walnut and hazelnut. Chris Smith, BGR, 5 Sep. 2022 People who are not allergic to tree nuts can still eat the product. Chris Smith, BGR, 5 Sep. 2022 See More

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.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

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

First Known Use

Noun

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

Verb

1575, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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

Dictionary Entries Near tree

Cite this Entry

“Tree.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tree. Accessed 2 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

tree

1 of 2 noun
1
a
: a woody plant that lives for years and has a usually single tall main stem with few or no branches on its lower part
b
: a shrub or herb that has a form like a tree
rose trees
a banana tree
2
: a piece of wood (as a post or pole) put to a particular use of forming part of a structure or device
3
: something shaped like or arranged in a form like a tree
especially : a diagram or graph in branching form compare factor tree, family tree sense 2
treeless adjective
treelike adjective

tree

2 of 2 verb
treed; treeing
1
: to drive up or as if up a tree
2
: to furnish or fit with a tree
tree an axle

Medical Definition

tree

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

Biographical Definition

Tree

biographical name

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

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