Definition of den in English:

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Pronunciation: /dɛn/


1A wild mammal’s hidden home; a lair: a female mink had set up her den there
More example sentences
  • North American river otters build dens in the burrows of other mammals, in natural hollows, such as under a log, or in river banks.
  • Inhabiting thick, wooded country and arid, shrubby areas, jaguars often make their dens in caves, or under overhanging rocks.
  • The pups emerged from their protective den, pawing the earth in celebration.
lair, sett, earth, drey, lodge, burrow, hole, tunnel, cave, dugout, hollow, covert, shelter, hiding place, hideout
informal hidey-hole
1.1 informal A room or hideout where a person can go to relax or be private: Harriet built a den in a tree
More example sentences
  • So I looked on other shelves in the living room, in the den, in the bedroom, and in my office downstairs.
  • These are the privileged few who had intimate meetings with the candidates in corporate suites and the private dens of the super rich.
  • Another flight of stairs leads to a good sized attic room which could suit a variety of uses - a den, games room, home office or perhaps a teenager's bedroom.
study, studio, library;
sanctum, retreat, sanctuary, hideaway, snuggery, snug, cubbyhole;
North American  cubby
informal hidey-hole
humorous sanctum sanctorum
1.2A place where people meet in secret, typically to engage in an illicit activity: an opium den a den of iniquity
More example sentences
  • Bombed-out buildings house dens of illicit commerce, while bridges and river banks swarm with a second society.
  • The City had obtained search warrants for various sites suspected of being dens of criminal activity, said communication's officer for the city.
  • George and Tony took the gang back to their secret den to discuss what to do next.
haunt, site, patch, hotbed, cradle, nest, pit, hole;
place of crime, place of vice
informal joint, dive, dump
2chiefly US A small subdivision of a Cub Scout pack.
Example sentences
  • Cub Scouting members join a Cub Scout pack and are assigned to a den, usually a neighborhood group of six to eight boys.
  • Once a month, all of the dens and family members gather for a pack meeting under the direction of a Cubmaster and pack committee.

verb (dens, denning, denned)

[no object]
(Of a wild animal) live in a den: the cubs denned in the late autumn
More example sentences
  • This time he would stay until the snows came, to make sure the cubs denned up.
  • We identified 617 disturbances on 72 trees that occurred during the time of year when polar bears were denning in the area and which we were unable to attribute to any other source.
  • Polar bears denning in Norway and Russia near the North Pole carry some of the highest levels of toxic compounds ever found in living animals.


Old English denn, of Germanic origin; related to German Tenne 'threshing floor', also to dene1.

Words that rhyme with den

Adrienne, again, amen, Ardennes, Behn, Ben, Benn, Bren, cayenne, Cévennes, Dairen, en, fen, gen, glen, Glenn, Guyenne, Gwen, hen, julienne, Karen, ken, Len, Loren, men, Nene, Ogaden, paren, pen, Penn, Phnom Penh, Rennes, Shenzhen, Sun Yat-sen, ten, then, Tlemcen, when, wren, yen, zazen, Zen

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