Definition of hone in English:


Line breaks: hone
Pronunciation: /həʊn


[with object]
  • 1Sharpen (a blade): he was carefully honing the curved blade
    More example sentences
    • When the sharpener is pulled firmly across a double-sided blade, it hones both sides of the tool at once.
    • In a small wooden case hanging from the cart, there are knife stones, sand paper and a special tool for honing the edge of new knives.
    • He sat down on his bed and took out his sword, honing the edge on a small, flat rock.
    sharpen, make sharper, make sharp, whet, strop, grind, file, put an edge on
    rare edge, acuminate
  • 2Refine or perfect (something) over a period of time: some of the best players in the world honed their skills playing street football (as adjective, with submodifier honed) a finely honed performance
    More example sentences
    • Aides say mock debates help to hone his arguments and to keep his answers focused.
    • With a view to providing an opportunity for the students to hone their skills, more colleges are entering into agreements with industries.
    • That allowed the company to focus exclusively on the corporate market and hone its message as a provider of premium services and products.
  • 2.1Give greater strength or firmness to (the body or a part of the body): she has been working hard to hone her physique
    More example sentences
    • Youthful, physically attractive bodies honed to perfection display the image we are expected to achieve.
    • She also possesses a body honed to gymnastic perfection, making her look 10 years younger than her age.
    • She has honed her muscles to a level which almost defies description.


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  • A whetstone, especially one used to sharpen razors.
    More example sentences
    • By the way, a diamond hone is the ideal tool for sharpening in camp.
    • The stone often arrived rough, from where it went to another site to be finished into the actual hone.
    • I like to start with a soft stone, such as the stick-like hones sometimes used by watchmakers.


Middle English: from Old English hān 'stone', of Germanic origin; related to Old Norse hein.


See home (usage)

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