Free & Quick Proofreading from Grammarly!

fine Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. noun money extracted as a penalty
    amercement; mulct.
  2. verb issue a ticket or a fine to as a penalty
    • I was fined for parking on the wrong side of the street
    • Move your car or else you will be ticketed!
  3. adjective satellite being satisfactory or in satisfactory condition
    all right; okay; hunky-dory; o.k.; ok.
    • an all-right movie
    • the passengers were shaken up but are all right
    • is everything all right?
    • everything's fine
    • things are okay
    • dinner and the movies had been fine
    • another minute I'd have been fine
  4. adjective satellite minutely precise especially in differences in meaning
    • a fine distinction
  5. adjective satellite thin in thickness or diameter
    • a fine film of oil
    • fine hairs
    • read the fine print
  6. adjective satellite characterized by elegance or refinement or accomplishment
    • fine wine
    • looking fine in her Easter suit
    • a fine gentleman
    • fine china and crystal
    • a fine violinist
    • the fine hand of a master
  7. adjective of textures that are smooth to the touch or substances consisting of relatively small particles
    • wood with a fine grain
    • fine powdery snow
    • fine rain
    • batiste is a cotton fabric with a fine weave
    • covered with a fine film of dust
  8. adjective satellite free from impurities; having a high or specified degree of purity
    • gold 21 carats fine
  9. adverb an expression of agreement normally occurring at the beginning of a sentence
    alright; OK; all right; very well.
  10. adverb in a delicate manner
    exquisitely; delicately; finely.
    • finely shaped features
    • her fine drawn body

Fine adjective
F. fin, LL. finus fine, pure, fr. L. finire to finish; cf. finitus, p.p., finished, completed (hence the sense accomplished, perfect.) See Finish, and cf. Finite.
comparative Finer ; superlative Finest
  1. Finished; brought to perfection; refined; hence, free from impurity; excellent; superior; elegant; worthy of admiration; accomplished; beautiful.
    The gain thereof [is better] than fine gold. Prov. iii. 14.
    A cup of wine that's brisk and fine. Shak.
    Not only the finest gentleman of his time, but one of the finest scholars. Felton.
    To soothe the sick bed of so fine a being [Keats]. Leigh Hunt.
  2. Aiming at show or effect; loaded with ornament; overdressed or overdecorated; showy.
    He gratified them with occasional . . . fine writing. M. Arnold.
  3. Nice; delicate; subtle; exquisite; artful; skillful; dexterous.
    The spider's touch, how exquisitely fine! Pope.
    The nicest and most delicate touches of satire consist in fine raillery. Dryden.
    He has as fine a hand at picking a pocket as a woman. T. Gray.
  4. Not coarse, gross, or heavy; as: (a) Not gross; subtile; thin; tenous.
    The eye standeth in the finer medium and the object in the grosser. Bacon.
    (b) Not coarse; comminuted; in small particles; as, fine sand or flour. (c) Not thick or heavy; slender; filmy; as, a fine thread. (d) Thin; attenuate; keen; as, a fine edge. (e) Made of fine materials; light; delicate; as, fine linen or silk.
  5. Having (such) a proportion of pure metal in its composition; as, coins nine tenths fine.
  6. (Used ironically.)
    Ye have made a fine hand, fellows. Shak.
    Fine is often compounded with participles and adjectives, modifying them adverbially; a, fine-drawn, fine-featured, fine-grained, fine-spoken, fine-spun, etc. Syn. -- Fine, Beautiful. When used as a word of praise, fine (being opposed to coarse) denotes no "ordinary thing of its kind." It is not as strong as beautiful, in reference to the single attribute implied in the latter term; but when we speak of a fine woman, we include a greater variety of particulars, viz., all the qualities which become a woman, -- breeding, sentiment, tact, etc. The term is equally comprehensive when we speak of a fine garden, landscape, horse, poem, etc.; and, though applied to a great variety of objects, the word has still a very definite sense, denoting a high degree of characteristic excellence.
Fine transitive verb
From Fine, a.
imperfect & past participle Fined ; present participle & verbal noun Fining
  1. To make fine; to refine; to purify, to clarify; as, to fine gold.
    It hath been fined and refined by . . . learned men. Hobbes.
  2. To make finer, or less coarse, as in bulk, texture, etc.; as. to fine the soil. L. H. Bailey.
  3. To change by fine gradations; as (Naut.), to fine down a ship's lines, to diminish her lines gradually.
    I often sate at home On evenings, watching how they fined themselves With gradual conscience to a perfect night. Browning.
Fine noun
OE. fin, L. finis end, also in LL., a final agreement or concord between the lord and his vassal; a sum of money paid at the end, so as to make an end of a transaction, suit, or prosecution; mulct; penalty; cf. OF. fin end, settlement, F. fin end. See Finish, and cf. Finance.
  1. End; conclusion; termination; extinction. Obs. "To see their fatal fine." Spenser.
    Is this the fine of his fines? Shak.
  2. A sum of money paid as the settlement of a claim, or by way of terminating a matter in dispute; especially, a payment of money imposed upon a party as a punishment for an offense; a mulct.
  3. (Law) (a) (Feudal Law) A final agreement concerning lands or rents between persons, as the lord and his vassal. Spelman. (b) (Eng. Law) A sum of money or price paid for obtaining a benefit, favor, or privilege, as for admission to a copyhold, or for obtaining or renewing a lease.
Fine transitive verb
From Fine, n.
  1. To impose a pecuniary penalty upon for an offense or breach of law; to set a fine on by judgment of a court; to punish by fine; to mulct; as, the trespassers were fined ten dollars.
Fine intransitive verb
  1. To pay a fine. See Fine, n., 3 (b). R.
    Men fined for the king's good will; or that he would remit his anger; women fined for leave to marry. Hallam.
Fine transitive verb & intransitive verb
OF. finer, F. finir. See Finish, v. t.
  1. To finish; to cease; or to cause to cease. Obs.

Webster 1913