Meaning of TEND in English


I. ˈtend verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle English tenden, short for attenden to attend

intransitive verb

1. archaic : to give ear : listen

tend to the master's whistle — Shakespeare

2. : to pay attention : apply oneself

you mind your business, and I'll tend to mine — Evelyn Barkins

3. : to act as an attendant or servant : serve , wait

never closed an eye watching and tending in his house — Walter Macken

4. obsolete : to be waiting : await

the time invites you, go, your servants tend — Shakespeare

transitive verb

1. archaic : to attend as a servant : accompany in order to render service

had I not four or five women once that tended me — Shakespeare

2. chiefly dialect : to be present at : attend


a. : to apply oneself to the care of : care for the wants of : minister to : watch over

tended him and ministered to his wants like an angel — C.B.Fairbanks

tending the destitute mothers and children — Winston Churchill

b. : to have or take charge of as a caretaker or overseer

a likely little citizen who … tends the family sheep — Irene Smith

c. : cultivate , foster

rice which has been specially planted and tended — J.G.Frazer

d. : to manage the operations of or do the necessary work connected with : mind

tended his textile mills — T.D.Parrish

quit to tend an open hearth — Time

tend store

tend bar

tend the fire

4. archaic : be attentive to : listen to

the stars that tend thy bidding — John Keats

- tend out on

II. intransitive verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle English tenden, short for intenden, entenden to intend

dialect : intend , purpose

III. verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle English tenden, from Middle French tendre to stretch, stretch out, direct oneself toward a place, tend, from Latin tendere — more at thin

intransitive verb


a. : to direct one's course or become moved in a particular direction

saw far in the north the misty outlines of the shore towards which they were tending — William Black

b. : to undergo change or development in a particular direction or toward a particular goal

the ideal toward which evolution continually tended — Roscoe Pound

the symptoms — where they were tending, where they were bound to end — disturbed him — J.G.Cozzens

c. : to extend in a certain direction

the foot of each sail is tending aft at quite an angle — All Hands


a. : to have an inclination to a particular quality, aspect, or state

modern hive design tends to simplicity — F.D.Smith & Barbara Wilcox

many marine invertebrates tend towards transparency or a bluish coloration — W.H.Dowdeswell

b. : to have an inclination toward a particular belief, feeling, or attitude

he tends to deny the moral content in human affairs — Norman Cousins

painters tend to rejoice in the commonplace — David Sylvester

3. : to exert activity or influence in a particular direction : serve as a means : conduce

the reduction of reserve requirements will tend to ease business borrowing — Nation's Business

not true that any advance in the scale of culture inevitably tends to the preservation of society — A.N.Whitehead

4. of a ship : to swing with the tide or wind while anchored

intransitive verb

1. : to manage (an anchored vessel) so as to prevent fouling of the cable

2. : to stand by (as a rope) in readiness to prevent fouling or other mischance

has a lifeline round him which is tended inboard — Manual of Seamanship

IV. noun

( -s )

: the angle made by the line of a ship's keel and the direction of the anchor cable when the ship is swinging at anchor

signaling with a flashlight the tend of the chain to the bridge — Chesley Wilson

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.