Taper meaning

tāpər
To become gradually narrower or thinner toward one end.
verb
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A long wax-coated wick used to light candles or gas lamps.
noun
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A small or very slender candle.
noun
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A source of feeble light.
noun
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To make thinner or narrower at one end.
verb
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To make smaller gradually.
verb
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Gradually decreasing in size toward a point.
adjective
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To taper is to gradually lessen or become less thick.

When the ends of a piece of rope thin out and become much thinner then the middle, this is an example of a time when the rope tapers.

When your interest in pottery begins to decline, this is an example of a time when your interest tapers off.

verb
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To diminish or lessen gradually. Often used with off .

The storm finally tapered off.

verb
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A wax candle, esp. a long, slender one.
noun
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A long wick coated with wax, used for lighting candles, lamps, etc.
noun
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Any feeble light.
noun
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Something that tapers.
noun
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Gradually decreased in breadth or thickness toward one end.
adjective
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To decrease gradually in width or thickness.
verb
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To lessen; diminish.
verb
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A slender wax candle; a small lighted wax candle; hence, a small light.
noun
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A tapering form; gradual diminution of thickness and/or cross section in an elongated object.

The taper of a spire.

The legs of the table had a slight taper to them.

noun
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A thin stick used for lighting candles, either a wax-coated wick or a slow-burning wooden rod.
noun
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To make thinner or narrower at one end.
verb
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(intransitive) To diminish gradually.
verb
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(weaving) One who operates a tape machine.
noun
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Someone who works with tape or tapes.
noun
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taper off
  • to become smaller gradually toward one end
  • to diminish or stop gradually
idiom
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Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
taper
Plural:
tapers

Idioms and Phrasal Verbs

Origin of taper

  • Middle English from Old English tapor possibly ultimately from Latin papyrus papyrus (sometimes used for candlewicks) paper

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Middle English taper, from Old English tapor (“taper, candle, wick of a lamp"), of uncertain origin. Perhaps from Latin papyrus (“papyrus", used in Mediaeval times to mean "wick of a candle"), or of Celtic origin related to Irish tapar (“taper"), Welsh tampr (“a taper, torch"). Compare Sanskrit [script?] (tápati, “(it) warms, gives out heat; to be hot; to heat"). More at tepid.

    From Wiktionary

  • tape +"Ž -er

    From Wiktionary