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

  • n. A game played with rackets and a light ball by two players or two pairs of players on a rectangular court, as of grass, clay, or asphalt, divided by a net. Also called lawn tennis.
  • n. Court tennis.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A sport played by either two or four players with strung racquets, a 2½" (6.4 cm) ball, and a net approximately 3 feet high on a clay, grass, or cement court.
  • n. A match in this sport.
  • v. To play tennis.
  • v. To drive backward and forward like a tennis ball.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A play in which a ball is driven to and fro, or kept in motion by striking it with a racket or with the open hand.
  • transitive v. To drive backward and forward, as a ball in playing tennis.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To drive, as a ball in playing tennis.
  • n. A very old and elaborate ball-game played by two, three, or four persons in a building specially constructed for the purpose.
  • n. Same as lawn-tennis.

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

  • n. a game played with rackets by two or four players who hit a ball back and forth over a net that divides the court


Middle English tenetz, tenyes, court tennis, from Anglo-Norman tenetz and Old French tenez, pl. imperative of tenir, to hold, from Latin tenēre; see detain.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old French tenez, second-person imperative of tenir ("hold"). (Wiktionary)



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  • I never understood why people play tennis. No matter how hard you work at it, how hard you try, you'll never be better than a wall.

    (Read here)

    May 24, 2009