from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To convert (skin) into white leather by mineral tanning, as with alum and salt.
  • n. Chiefly Southern U.S. A large, fancy marble used for shooting.
  • n. The line from which a player shoots in marbles.
  • n. A game of marbles.
  • intransitive v. To shoot a marble.
  • n. Variant of tav.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To prepare.
  • v. Specifically, to turn (animals’ hide) into leather, usually by soaking it in a certain solution.
  • n. Tawed leather.
  • n. A favorite marble in the game of marbles.
  • n. A line or mark from which the players begin a game of marbles.
  • n. ring-taw
  • n. dance partner
  • n. A favorite person; beloved, partner, spouse.
  • v. to shoot a marble
  • n. The twenty-second and last letter of many Semitic alphabets/abjads (Phoenician, Aramaic, Hebrew, Syriac, Arabic and others).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Tow.
  • n. A large marble to be played with; also, a game at marbles.
  • n. A line or mark from which the players begin a game of marbles.
  • transitive v. To push; to tug; to tow.
  • transitive v. To prepare or dress, as hemp, by beating; to tew; hence, to beat; to scourge.
  • transitive v. To dress and prepare, as the skins of sheep, lambs, goats, and kids, for gloves, and the like, by imbuing them with alum, salt, and other agents, for softening and bleaching them.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To work, dress, or prepare (some raw material) for use or for further manipulation.
  • Especially To make (hides) into leather, specifically by soaking them, after cleaning, in a solution of alum and salt. See leather, tanning.
  • To harden or make tough.
  • To beat; thrash.
  • To torture; torment.
  • n. The twenty-second and last letter (R) of the Hebrew alphabet, corresponding to the English t. Its numerical value is 400.
  • n. Implements; tackle.
  • n. A Middle English variant of tow.
  • n. A game at marbles.
  • n. The line or limit from which the players shoot in playing marbles.
  • n. A marble. Compare alley-taw.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the 23rd letter of the Hebrew alphabet
  • n. a large marble used for shooting in the game of marbles


Middle English tawen, from Old English tawian, to prepare.
Origin unknown.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English tawen, from Old English tawian ("to do, make"), from Proto-Germanic *tawjanan (“to make, prepare”), from Proto-Indo-European *dewǝ- (“to tie to, secure”). Cognate with Dutch touwen ("to rope, tether, curry"), Dutch tuien ("to fasten with ropes"), German Tau ("rope, hawser, cable"), Gothic 𐍄𐌰𐌿𐌾𐌰𐌽 (taujan, "to make, prepare"). Related to tool and tether. (Wiktionary)
Origin unknown. (Wiktionary)



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  • A type of marble, as in the kids game, not the stone. Otherwise known as a Shooter.

    December 13, 2006