follow Dictionary.com

Get the details behind our redesign

refine

[ri-fahyn] /rɪˈfaɪn/
verb (used with object), refined, refining.
1.
to bring to a fine or a pure state; free from impurities:
to refine metal, sugar, or petroleum.
2.
to purify from what is coarse, vulgar, or debasing; make elegant or cultured.
3.
to bring to a finer state or form by purifying.
4.
to make more fine, subtle, or precise:
to refine one's writing style.
verb (used without object), refined, refining.
5.
to become pure:
The silver is refining in the furnace.
6.
to become more fine, elegant, or polished:
His parents hope that his manners will refine as he gets older.
7.
to make fine distinctions in thought or language.
Verb phrases
8.
refine on/upon, to improve by inserting finer distinctions, superior elements, etc.:
to refine on one's previous work.
Origin
1575-1585
1575-85; re- + fine1
Related forms
refinable, adjective
refiner, noun
prerefine, verb (used with object), prerefined, prerefining.
self-refining, adjective
superrefine, verb (used with object), superrefined, superrefining.
unrefining, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for refiner

refine

/rɪˈfaɪn/
verb
1.
to make or become free from impurities, sediment, or other foreign matter; purify
2.
(transitive) to separate (a mixture) into pure constituents, as in an oil refinery
3.
to make or become free from coarse characteristics; make or become elegant or polished
4.
(transitive) often foll by out. to remove (something impure or extraneous)
5.
(intransitive; often foll by on or upon) to enlarge or improve (upon) by making subtle or fine distinctions
6.
(transitive) to make (language) more subtle or polished
Derived Forms
refinable, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from re- + fine1

refiner

/rɪˈfaɪnə/
noun
1.
a person, device, or substance that removes impurities, sediment, or other unwanted matter from something
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for refiner
refine
1582, of metals, 1588 of manners, from re-, intensive prefix + obs. fine (v.) "make fine," from fine (adj.) "delicate" (q.v.). Cf. Fr. raffiner, It. raffinare, Sp. refinar. General and fig. sense is recorded from 1596; of sugar, from 1613. Refinery in various senses is first recorded 1727. Refinement "act or process of refining" is from 1611; meaning "fineness of feeling" is from 1708.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
refiner in Medicine

refine re·fine (rĭ-fīn')
v. re·fined, re·fin·ing, re·fines
To reduce to a pure state; purify.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
refiner in the Bible

The process of refining metals is referred to by way of illustrations in Isa. 1:25; Jer. 6:29; Zech. 13:9; Mal. 3:2, 3.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for refine

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for refiner

10
11
Scrabble Words With Friends