- (law, Old English law) To make a tender of; to offer or tender.
- (followed by a to-infinitive) To be likely, or probable to do something, or to have a certain habit or leaning. [from the mid-14th c.]
- They tend to go out on Saturdays.
- It tends to snow here in winter.
- (intransitive) To contribute to or toward some outcome.
- 1812, William Cobbett, The Parliamentary History of England:
- The Lords in 1722 declared that annexing such Clauses tends to the destruction of this government. And yet there are such bills every session and you pass them.
- In sense 2, this is a catenative verb that takes the to infinitive.
- See Appendix:English catenative verbs
- 'tend (obsolete)
- (with to) To look after (e.g. an ill person.) [from the early 14th c.]
- We need to tend to the garden, which has become a mess.
- To accompany as an assistant or protector; to care for the wants of; to look after; to watch; to guard.
- Shepherds tend their flocks.
- To wait (upon), as attendants or servants; to serve; to attend.
- c. 1603–1606, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of King Lear”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act II, scene i]:
- Was he not companion with the riotous knights / That tend upon my father?
- (obsolete) To await; to expect.
- 1610–1611, William Shakespeare, “The Tempest”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act I, scene ii]:
- Had I not. Four or five women once that tended me?
- (obsolete) To be attentive to; to note carefully; to attend to.
- 1614–1615, Homer, “(please specify the book number)”, in Geo[rge] Chapman, transl., Homer’s Odysses. […], London: […] Rich[ard] Field [and William Jaggard], for Nathaniell Butter, published 1615, OCLC 1002865976; republished in The Odysseys of Homer, […], volume (please specify the book number), London: John Russell Smith, […], 1857, OCLC 987451380:
- Being to descend / A ladder much in height, I did not tend / My way well down.
- (transitive, nautical) To manage (an anchored vessel) when the tide turns, to prevent it from entangling the cable when swinging.
- (to look after): care for, minister to, nurse, see to, take care of
- (to accompany as an assistant): guard, look after, watch
- (to wait upon): See also Thesaurus:serve
- (to await): See also Thesaurus:wait for
- (to be attentive to): attend to
- (to manage when the tide turns):
From Middle English tenden, from Old English tendan (“to kindle, set on fire”) (usually in compounds ātendan, fortendan, ontendan), from Proto-Germanic *tandijaną (“to kindle”), of unknown origin. Cognate with Danish tænde (“to kindle”), Swedish tända (“to ignite”), Gothic 𐍄𐌰𐌽𐌳𐌾𐌰𐌽 (tandjan, “to kindle”), Icelandic tendra (“to ignite”), German zünden (“to light, ignite, fire”). Related to tinder.
- tend in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.
- tend in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911.
- tend at OneLook Dictionary Search
From Proto-Albanian *tend-, from Proto-Indo-European *ten-d- (“to distend; draw, stretch (out)”). Cognate to Latin tendo (“to stretch (out), strain”). Present dendë with assimilation of the anlaut.