tooth[to̵̅o̅t̸h; for v., also to̵̅o̅t̸h]
- The definition of a tooth is the hard, small, white parts covered in enamel and set in the jaw or something that resembles them in structure or function.
- An example of a tooth is the tool in the mouth used to bite and chew.
- An example of a tooth is one of the long, fine ends of a comb.
This little boy has lost a tooth.
- any of a set of hard, bonelike structures set in the jaws of most vertebrates and used for biting, tearing, and chewing: a tooth consists typically of a sensitive, vascular pulp surrounded by dentin and coated on the crown with enamel and on the root with cementum: normally 32 are in the permanent set and 20 in the deciduous set of a human
- any of various analogous processes in invertebrates
- denture (sense )
- something resembling a tooth; toothlike part, as on a saw, fork, rake, gearwheel, etc.; tine, prong, cog, etc.
- appetite or taste for something specified: now only in sweet tooth
- something that bites, pierces, or gnaws like a tooth: the teeth of the storm
- a rough surface, as on paper, metal, etc.
- a sound or effective means of enforcing something: to put teeth into a law
- Bot. any small, pointed lobe, as of a leaf or of the fringe surrounding the opening of a capsule in mosses
Origin of toothMiddle English ; from Old English toth (; from an unverified form tanth), akin to German zahn ; from Indo-European an unverified form edont- (; from base an unverified form ed-, to eat) from source Classical Latin dens (gen. dentis), Classical Greek odous (gen. odontos)
- to provide with teeth
- to make jagged; indent
long in the tooth
tooth and nail
nounpl. teeth teeth
- a. One of a set of hard, bonelike structures in the jaws of vertebrates, usually rooted in sockets and typically composed of a core of soft pulp surrounded by a layer of hard dentin that is coated with cementum or enamel at the crown and used for biting or chewing food or as a means of attack or defense.b. A similar hard projection in an invertebrate, such as one of a set of projections on the hinge of a bivalve or on the radula of a snail.
- A projecting part resembling a tooth in shape or function, as on a comb, gear, or saw.
- A small, notched projection along a margin, especially of a leaf. Also called dent2.
- A rough surface, as of paper or metal.
- a. often teeth Something that injures or destroys with force: the teeth of the blizzard.b. teeth Effective means of enforcement; muscle: “This &ellipsis; puts real teeth into something where there has been only lip service” (Ellen Convisser).
verbtoothed, tooth·ing, tooths
- To furnish (a tool, for example) with teeth.
- To make a jagged edge on.
Origin of toothMiddle English, from Old English tōth; see dent- in Indo-European roots.
top: cross section of a human tooth
bottom: teeth on mechanical gears
- A hard, calcareous structure present in the mouth of many vertebrate animals, generally used for eating.
- A sharp projection on the blade of a saw or similar implement.
- A projection on the edge of a gear that meshes with similar projections on adjacent gears, or on the circumference of a cog that engages with a chain.
- (botany) A pointed projection from the margin of a leaf.
- (animation) The rough surface of some kinds of cel or other films that allow better adhesion of artwork.
- (figuratively) taste; palate
- I have a sweet tooth: I love sugary treats.
(third-person singular simple present tooths, present participle toothing, simple past and past participle toothed)
From Middle English tooth, from Old English tÅÃ¾ (â€œtoothâ€), from Proto-Germanic *tanÃ¾s (â€œtoothâ€), from Proto-Indo-European *hâ‚ƒdÃ³nts (â€œtoothâ€). Cognate with Scots tuth, tuith (â€œtoothâ€), North Frisian toth, tos (â€œtoothâ€), Dutch tand (â€œtoothâ€), German Zahn (â€œtoothâ€), Danish and Swedish tand (â€œtoothâ€), Icelandic tÃ¶nn (â€œtoothâ€), Welsh dant (â€œtoothâ€), Latin dÄ“ns (â€œtoothâ€), Lithuanian dantÃ¬s (â€œtoothâ€), Ancient Greek á½€Î´Î¿ÏÏ‚ (odous, odá¹“n, â€œtoothâ€), Armenian Õ¡Õ¿Õ¡Õ´ (atam), Persian Ø¯Ù†Ø¯Ø§Ù† (dandÃ¢n), Sanskrit à¤¦à¤¤à¥ (dÃ¡t, â€œtoothâ€). Related to tusk.