"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[tohm] /toʊm/
a book, especially a very heavy, large, or learned book.
a volume forming a part of a larger work.
Origin of tome
1510-20; < French < Latin tomus < Greek tómos slice, piece, roll of paper, book, akin to témnein to cut


a combining form with the meanings “cutting instrument” (microtome; osteotome), “segment, somite” (sclerotome), used in the formation of compound words.
Compare tomo-, -tomous, -tomy.
combining form representing Greek tomḗ a cutting; tómos a cut, slice; -tomon (neuter), -tomos (masculine) -cutting (adj.) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for tome
  • If you didn't know the book's vintage, you might confuse it for a lost medieval tome.
  • His tome is a litany of disappointment and frustration, studded with plenty of useful insights and anecdotes.
  • The snarky tone is quite reminiscent of the marginalia on the many, many drafts of said forgotten tome.
  • Bookshops were bombed and the tome was burned in public across the world.
  • Tables and couches upstairs afford customers a chance to curl up with a tome for hours.
  • Anything that's not a tome and not weighed down with political invective is appreciated.
  • No dusty tome written over two thousand years ago is going to disprove evolution.
  • As his tome arrives in bookstores at summer's end, the battlefield has changed dramatically.
British Dictionary definitions for tome


a large weighty book
one of the several volumes of a work
Word Origin
C16: from French, from Latin tomus section of larger work, from Greek tomos a slice, from temnein to cut; related to Latin tondēre to shear


combining form
indicating an instrument for cutting: osteotome
Word Origin
from Greek tomē a cutting, tomos a slice, from temnein to cut
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 tome

1510s, from Middle French tome, from Latin tomus "section of a book, tome," from Greek tomos "volume, section of a book," originally "section, piece cut off," from temnein "to cut," from PIE *tom-/*tem- "to cut" (cf. second element in Latin aestimare "to value, appraise," Old Church Slavonic tina "to cleave, split," Middle Irish tamnaim "I cut off," Welsh tam "morsel"). Originally "a single volume of a multi-volume work;" sense of "a large book" is attested from 1570s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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tome in Medicine

-tome suff.

  1. Part; area; segment: dermatome.

  2. Cutting instrument: microtome.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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