Definitions

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

  • noun Thread made from fibers of the flax plant.
  • noun Cloth woven from this thread.
  • noun Articles or garments, such as sheets, tablecloths, or underwear, formerly made of linen and now usually made of other fabrics, especially cotton.
  • noun Paper made from flax fibers or having a linenlike luster.
  • adjective Made of flax or linen.
  • adjective Resembling linen.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Made of the fibers of flax: as, linen thread; linen cloth.
  • Resembling linen cloth; white; pale.
  • noun A fabric of linen yarn or thread; cloth woven from the fibers of flax; in the plural, linen cloth in general; manufactures of flax-fiber: as, Irish linens.
  • noun Collectively, articles of linen fabric, or by extension (in modern use) of linen and cotton, or of cotton alone for household use, as tablecloths, napkins, etc. (table-linen), sheets and pillow-cases (bed-linen), towels, etc., or for underwear (body-linen), etc.
  • noun Linen thread.
  • noun Cloth made of hemp.
  • noun plural Sails.

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

  • adjective Made of linen
  • adjective Resembling linen cloth; white; pale.
  • noun Thread or cloth made of flax or (rarely) of hemp; -- used in a general sense to include cambric, shirting, sheeting, towels, tablecloths, etc.
  • noun Underclothing, esp. the shirt, as being, in former times, chiefly made of linen.
  • noun a dealer in linen.
  • noun a small microscope for counting the threads in a given space in linen fabrics.
  • noun (Arch.) an ornament for filling panels, copied from the folds of a piece of stuff symmetrically disposed.

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

  • noun uncountable Thread or cloth made from flax fiber.
  • noun countable Domestic textiles, such as tablecloths, bedding, towels, under clothes, etc., that are made of linen or linen-like fabrics of cotton or other fibers; linens.
  • noun A light beige colour, like that of linen cloth undyed.

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

  • noun a fabric woven with fibers from the flax plant
  • noun white goods or clothing made with linen cloth
  • noun a high-quality paper made of linen fibers or with a linen finish

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, from Old English līnen, made of flax, from Germanic *līnin-, from *līnam, flax, probably from Latin līnum; see lĭ̄no- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English, from Old English līnen ("linen", "made of flax"), from Proto-Germanic *līnīnaz (“made of flax”), from Proto-Germanic *līnan (“flax”), from Proto-Indo-European *līn- (“flax”). Cognate with Latin linum ("flax"). More at line.

Examples

  • After long and exhaustive trials, we have come to the conclusion that the best material for wearing next the skin is knitted linen, and the best knitted linen of the kind, and in fact, the only pure linen mesh material which we have seen, is known as _Kneipp linen_, and can be obtained from all leading retailers and outfitters in this and other countries.

    Papers on Health

  • a cotton and linen cloth, and _diaper linen_ was woven of flax with a raised figure such as in damask, and used chiefly for table-linen.

    Domestic Life in Virginia in the Seventeenth Century

  • His taste in linen is classical; she was not fortunate.

    Black Lamb and Grey Falcon: Part IV

  • His taste in linen is classical; she was not fortunate.

    Black Lamb and Grey Falcon: Part IV

  • His taste in linen is classical; she was not fortunate.

    Black Lamb and Grey Falcon: Part IV

  • His taste in linen is classical; she was not fortunate.

    Black Lamb and Grey Falcon: Part IV

  • Note: All references to "linen" is not our linen derived from flax, but a similar appearing and feeling fabric extracted from a particular kelp on Skene.

    Archive 2004-12-12

  • Note: All references to "linen" is not our linen derived from flax, but a similar appearing and feeling fabric extracted from a particular kelp on Skene.

    SKENE CLOTHING

  • And on Saturdays, young men in linen trousers lined up to drink papa's bourbon, and get close to Blanche; flowers in her hair, eyes unfocused, why yes I'd like another drink you silly goose.

    Belle Reve

  • The value of the linen is determined by the coat, by saying that we can exchange the coat for it and will be exchanging equal values.

    A Bland and Deadly Courtesy

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