twin

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English twinne, twynne, from Old English ġetwinn (twin, multiple, noun) and twinn (twin, two-fold, double, two by two, adjective), from Proto-Germanic *twinjaz, *twinaz (two each), from Proto-Indo-European *dwino- (twin), from Proto-Indo-European *dwóh₁ (two). Cognate with Scots twyn (twin), Dutch tweeling (twin), German Zwilling (twin), Swedish tvilling (twin), Faroese tvinnur (a double set), Icelandic tvenna (duo, pair), Lithuanian dvynys (twin), Russian двойня (dvoynya, twin).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

twin (plural twins)

  1. Either of two people (or, less commonly, animals) who shared the same uterus at the same time; one who was born at the same birth as a sibling.
  2. Either of two similar or closely related objects, entities etc.
  3. A room in a hotel, guesthouse, etc. with two beds; a twin room.
  4. (US) A twin size mattress or a bed designed for such a mattress.
  5. A twin crystal.
  6. (modifier) Forming a pair of twins.
    the twin boys
  7. (modifier) Forming a matched pair.
    twin socks

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Verb[edit]

twin (third-person singular simple present twins, present participle twinning, simple past and past participle twinned)

  1. (transitive, obsolete outside Scotland) To separate, divide.
  2. (intransitive, obsolete outside Scotland) To split, part; to go away, depart.
  3. (usually in the passive) To join, unite; to form links between (now especially of two places in different countries).
    Placetown in England is twinned with Machinville in France.
    For example, Coventry twinned with Dresden as an act of peace and reconciliation, both cities having been heavily bombed during the war.
    • Tennyson
      Still we moved / Together, twinned, as horse's ear and eye.
  4. (intransitive) To give birth to twins.
    • 1874, Thomas Hardy, Far from the Madding Crowd
      “I’ve run to tell ye,” said the junior shepherd, supporting his exhausted youthful frame against the doorpost, “that you must come directly. Two more ewes have twinned — that’s what’s the matter, Shepherd Oak.”
  5. (intransitive, obsolete) To be born at the same birth.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)

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