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a tooth


From Middle English tooth, from Old English tōþ (tooth), from Proto-Germanic *tanþs (tooth), from Proto-Indo-European *h₃dónts (tooth). Cognate with Scots tuth, tuith (tooth), North Frisian toth, tos (tooth), Dutch tand (tooth), German Zahn (tooth), Danish and Swedish tand (tooth), Icelandic tönn (tooth), Welsh dant (tooth), Latin dēns (tooth), Lithuanian dantìs (tooth), Ancient Greek ὀδούς (odoús)/ὀδών (odṓn) ("tooth"), Armenian ատամ (atam), Persian دندان (dandân), Sanskrit दत् (dát, tooth). Related to tusk.



tooth (plural teeth)

  1. A hard, calcareous structure present in the mouth of many vertebrate animals, generally used for eating.
  2. A sharp projection on the blade of a saw or similar implement.
  3. 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.
  4. (botany) A pointed projection from the margin of a leaf.
  5. (animation) The rough surface of some kinds of cel or other films that allow better adhesion of artwork.
  6. (figuratively) taste; palate
    I have a sweet tooth: I love sugary treats.
    • Dryden
      These are not dishes for thy dainty tooth.


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tooth (third-person singular simple present tooths, present participle toothing, simple past and past participle toothed)

  1. To provide or furnish with teeth.
  2. To indent; to jag.
    to tooth a saw
  3. To lock into each other, like gear wheels.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Moxon to this entry?)