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[too-nik, tyoo-] /ˈtu nɪk, ˈtyu-/
Chiefly British. a coat worn as part of a military or other uniform.
a gownlike outer garment, with or without sleeves and sometimes belted, worn by the ancient Greeks and Romans.
a woman's upper garment, either loose or close-fitting and extending over the skirt to the hips or below.
a garment with a short skirt, worn by women for sports.
Ecclesiastical. a tunicle.
Anatomy, Zoology. any covering or investing membrane or part, as of an organ.
Botany. an integument, as that covering a seed.
Origin of tunic
before 900; (< French tunique) < Latin tunica; perhaps also continuing Old English tunece, tunica < Latin
Related forms
subtunic, noun
supertunic, noun
undertunic, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for tunic
  • He wore the traditional dhoti, a long loincloth with a tunic buttoned over it.
  • The best-looking dress at the moment seems to be a dark tunic.
  • But coats of many colors are stalking the catwalks with thick tunic sweaters another strong trend.
  • She is so magnificent at night in her slinky dresses or in a moonbeam silver knit tunic over a pencil-thin skirt.
  • Coral dangled from shoulder straps or edged tunic and pants for a daytime look.
  • Then he approaches, menacingly parts his tunic-and urinates onto a nearby plant.
  • The renal sinus is lined by a prolongation of the fibrous tunic, which is continued around the lips of the hilum.
  • Those who were present rent his tunic from top to bottom, which was intended for a mark of his deposition.
  • It consists of a skirt that extends to the ankles, with a tunic top that extends to the knees.
  • Lots of buzz about the flowered tunic the first lady wore yesterday.
British Dictionary definitions for tunic


any of various hip-length or knee-length garments, such as the loose sleeveless garb worn in ancient Greece or Rome, the jacket of some soldiers, or a woman's hip-length garment, worn with a skirt or trousers
(anatomy, botany, zoology) a covering, lining, or enveloping membrane of an organ or part See also tunica
(mainly RC Church) another word for tunicle
Word Origin
Old English tunice (unattested except in the accusative case), from Latin tunica
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 tunic

c.1600, from Middle French tunique, from Latin tunica (cf. Spanish tunica, Italian tonica, Old English tunece, Old High German tunihha), probably from a Semitic source (cf. Hebrew kuttoneth "coat," Aramaic kittuna).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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tunic in Medicine

tunic tu·nic (tōō'nĭk, tyōō'-)
A coat or layer enveloping an organ or a part; tunica.

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