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

  • n. The dressed or tanned hide of an animal, usually with the hair removed.
  • n. Any of various articles or parts made of dressed or tanned hide, such as a boot or strap.
  • n. The flap of a dog's ear.
  • transitive v. To cover wholly or in part with the dressed or tanned hide of an animal.
  • transitive v. Informal To beat with a strap made of hide.
  • adj. Made of, relating to, or resembling dressed or tanned animal hide.
  • adj. Slang Of, relating to, or patronized by people who dress in leather clothing primarily to indicate a preference for sadomasochistic sex: leather types; a leather bar.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A tough material produced from the skin of animals, by tanning or similar process, used e.g. for clothing.
  • n. A piece of the above used for polishing.
  • n. A cricket ball or football.
  • n. clothing made from the skin of animals, often worn by motorcycle riders.
  • n. A good defensive play
  • adj. Made of leather.
  • adj. Referring to one who wears leather clothing (motorcycle jacket, chaps over 501 jeans, boots), especially as a sign of sadomasochistic homosexuality.
  • v. To cover with leather.
  • v. To strike forcefully.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of, pertaining to or made of leather; consisting of leather.
  • n. The skin of an animal, or some part of such skin, with the hair removed, and tanned, tawed, or otherwise dressed for use; also, dressed hides, collectively.
  • n. The skin.
  • transitive v. To beat, as with a thong of leather.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The tanned, tawed, or otherwise dressed skin of an animal; dressed hides or skins collectively.
  • n. Human skin.
  • n. A round piece, of tanned hide on the end of a fish-hook, designed to keep the bait from sliding up on the line.
  • n. The loose hanging part of a dog's ear.
  • n. Leather finished for use without artificial coloring, as that of which shoes are made for use in hot weather.
  • n. Hence— Leather slightly colored, tinged red or yellowish-brown, for use in the same way.
  • Consisting of leather; leathern: as, a leather glove.
  • To furnish with leather; apply leather to; form into leather; tan.
  • To beat or thrash with or as with a thong of leather.
  • To beat; strike.
  • n. In cricket, the ball.
  • n. plural Wearing-apparel made of leather, as breeches, leggings, etc.
  • n. One who wears ‘leathers.’

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

  • v. whip with a leather strap
  • n. an animal skin made smooth and flexible by removing the hair and then tanning


Middle English lether, from Old English lether- (as in letherhose, leather pants).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old English leþer, from Proto-Germanic *leþran (compare West Frisian leare, Dutch leder, German Leder, Swedish läder), from Gaulish *letrom (compare Welsh lledr, Irish lethar), from pre-Celtic *péltrom, from Proto-Indo-European *pel- 'to beat'. More at anvil. (Wiktionary)



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