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[tar-ee] /ˈtær i/
verb (used without object), tarried, tarrying.
to remain or stay, as in a place; sojourn:
He tarried in Baltimore on his way to Washington.
to delay or be tardy in acting, starting, coming, etc.; linger or loiter.
to wait.
verb (used with object), tarried, tarrying.
Archaic. to wait for.
noun, plural tarries.
a stay; sojourn.
Origin of tarry1
1275-1325; Middle English taryen to delay, tary a delay < ?
Related forms
tarrier, noun
untarried, adjective
untarrying, adjective
1. rest, lodge, stop, abide. 3. See wait.
1. leave. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for tarries
Historical Examples
  • His appointment was for noon; he tarries, I fear, in the city.

    The Fair God Lew Wallace
  • He avoids the populous cities, and tarries not in the smiling villages.

  • “He tarries long,” she said throwing a mass of auburn curls from a broad, low brow.

    In Doublet and Hose Lucy Foster Madison
  • She waits for Doon, her friend, but he tarries long and does not come.

  • But the Bridegroom tarries, and while He tarries the business of the night must go on.

  • But he, the man-child glorious,— Where tarries he the while?

    May-Day Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • In the vestibule of one of the houses of spiritism, he tarries a spell and parleys with the servant.

    The Book of Khalid Ameen Rihani
  • If he tarries on the road, it will be at his peril; and give my compliments to Mr. Ferguson—or stay—Archie, write a word yourself.

    Merkland Mrs. Oliphant
  • “Life flies apace and tarries not an hour,” she said, translating to me.

    Francezka Molly Elliot Seawell
  • Large is his score who tarries through the day, Who goes the soonest has the least to pay.

    Gleanings in Graveyards Horatio Edward Norfolk
British Dictionary definitions for tarries


verb -ries, -rying, -ried
(intransitive) to delay in coming or going; linger
(intransitive) to remain temporarily or briefly
(intransitive) to wait or stay
(transitive) (archaic or poetic) to await
noun (pl) -ries
(rare) a stay
Derived Forms
tarrier, noun
Word Origin
C14 tarien, of uncertain origin
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
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Word Origin and History for tarries



early 14c., "to delay, retard," of uncertain origin. Some suggest a connection to Latin tardare "to delay," or Old English tergan "to vex, irritate." Intransitive meaning "to linger" is attested from late 14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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