a small, pointed instrument for making holes in cloth, leather, etc.
a long pinshaped instrument used by women to fasten up the hair.
a blunt, needlelike instrument for drawing tape, cord, etc., through a loop, hem, or the like.
Obsolete. a small dagger; stiletto.

1350–1400; Middle English badeken, bo(i)dekyn, of uncertain origin Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To bodkin
World English Dictionary
bodkin (ˈbɒdkɪn)
1.  a blunt large-eyed needle used esp for drawing tape through openwork
2.  archaic a dagger
3.  printing a pointed steel tool used for extracting characters when correcting metal type
4.  archaic a long ornamental hairpin
[C14: probably of Celtic origin; compare Gaelic biodag dagger]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

late 14c., boydekin, of unknown origin. The ending suggests a dim. form, and Celtic has been suggested as the source of the root.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Example sentences
As an experimenter, he touched and tasted everything, and once thrust a bodkin in his eye to discover what colours he would see.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature