Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A decorative border or edging of hanging threads, cords, or strips, often attached to a separate band.
  • noun Something that resembles such a border or edging.
  • noun A marginal, peripheral, or secondary part.
  • noun Those members of a group or political party holding extreme views.
  • noun Any of the light or dark bands produced by the diffraction or interference of light.
  • noun A fringe benefit.
  • transitive verb To decorate with or as if with a fringe.
  • transitive verb To serve as a fringe to.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To decorate with a fringe or fringes, whether by raveling the edge, as of cloth, or by sewing on; border.
  • noun An ornamental bordering formed of short lengths of thread, whether loose or twisted, or of twisted cord more or less fine, variously arranged or combined, projecting from the edge of the material ornamented.
  • noun Something resembling a fringe; a broken border; any border or edging: as, a fringe of trees around a field, or of shrubs around a garden; a fringe of troops along a line of defense.
  • noun Specifically In botany, a border of slender processes or teeth; a fimbria.
  • noun In optics, one of the alternate light and dark bands produced by diffraction. See diffraction.
  • noun In zoology, a row of closely set, even hairs on a margin; specifically, in entomology, the edging of fine even hairs on the wing of a butterfly or moth.
  • noun In photography, a thickened edge of inferior sensitiveness on the pouring-off margin of a sensitized plate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To adorn the edge of with a fringe or as with a fringe.
  • transitive verb See Coral reefs, under Coral.
  • noun An ornamental appendage to the border of a piece of stuff, originally consisting of the ends of the warp, projecting beyond the woven fabric; but more commonly made separate and sewed on, consisting sometimes of projecting ends, twisted or plaited together, and sometimes of loose threads of wool, silk, or linen, or narrow strips of leather, or the like.
  • noun Something resembling in any respect a fringe; a line of objects along a border or edge; a border; an edging; a margin; a confine.
  • noun (Opt.) One of a number of light or dark bands, produced by the interference of light; a diffraction band; -- called also interference fringe.
  • noun (Bot.) The peristome or fringelike appendage of the capsules of most mosses. See Peristome.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective Outside the mainstream.
  • noun A decorative border.
  • noun A marginal or peripheral part.
  • noun Those members of a political party, or any social group, holding unorthodox views.
  • noun The periphery of a town or city.
  • noun That part of the hair that hangs down above the eyes; bangs.
  • noun physics A light or dark band formed by the diffraction of light.
  • noun Non-mainstream theatre.
  • verb transitive To decorate with fringe.
  • verb transitive To serve as a fringe.

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

  • noun one of the light or dark bands produced by the interference and diffraction of light
  • noun the outside boundary or surface of something
  • noun a social group holding marginal or extreme views
  • noun an ornamental border consisting of short lengths of hanging threads or tassels
  • noun a part of the city far removed from the center
  • verb decorate with or as if with a surrounding fringe
  • verb adorn with a fringe
  • noun a border of hair that is cut short and hangs across the forehead

Etymologies

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

[Middle English frenge, from Old French, from Vulgar Latin *frimbia, alteration of Late Latin fimbria; see fimbria.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English, from Old French frenge, from Vulgar Latin *frimbia, metathesis of Latin fimbriae ("fibers", "threads", "fringe") (plural). (Cognates include German Franse and Danish frynse.)

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Examples

  • Macramé is an Arabic word, signifying an ornamental fringe or trimming, which has been adopted as the term for a certain kind of hand-work, known also as «knotted fringe» or «Mexican lace» and produced by the knotting, interweaving and tying together of threads.

    Encyclopedia of Needlework

  • They like her because she brags about being a "real American" – which to the fringe is code for white.

    Palin steps down as Alaska governor

  • The term fringe -- as in the annual arts festival the Edinburgh Festival Fringe -- is a term many actors bridle at.

    Latest News - Yahoo!7 News

  • It's super long (as in waist long), the ends are dry and my fringe is awkwardly long as well.

    Archive 2008-09-01

  • I've been hearing about this book for what seems like years now at places like PIDRadio and FutureQuake, among others, touting how great this book is as both a fiction novel and a manifasto of sorts on what I call the fringe of Christian conspiracy theorists of which I probably am a member...

    The Facade by Mike Heiser

  • I've been hearing about this book for what seems like years now at places like PIDRadio and FutureQuake, among others, touting how great this book is as both a fiction novel and a manifasto of sorts on what I call the fringe of Christian conspiracy theorists of which I probably am a member...

    Archive 2009-12-01

  • I mean, a fringe is a pretty big change, if they do it wrong it's like months until it looks ok again!

    So

  • If they are what we call fringe, well, not so good for your lifespan or waistline if frequented on a regular basis.

    Mari Gallagher: Fast, Cheap and Easy: How Fringe Food Hurts Public Health When it's the Only Choice

  • A flag with a fringe is an ensign, a military flag.

    Sound Politics: Neal Starkman Wants To Help The Republicans

  • He is enjoying her mind, plans to work with her in a number of ways, but worries that she seems to be what he termed a fringe player, someone not especially in the thick of the social scene and one who goes off by herself somewhat.

    On challenging my youngest child « The Life and Times of Organic Mama

Comments

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  • "Held at the Mercury Cinema in Adelaide the AWG Screenwriters Fringe will bring together emerging and established local and international screenwriters for discussions that will be informative, provocative, challenging and inspirational."

    - newsletter, Australian Writers' Guild, 20 Nov 2008.

    November 20, 2008

  • "on the fringe of" = on the outside/edge of

    April 30, 2010

  • There is also a t.v. show named this.

    September 12, 2012