Date: 1200-1300
Language: French
Origin: fin, from Latin finire; FINISH1


1 adjective
Related topics: Textures, Sounds
fine1 S1 W1


[not before noun] especially spoken satisfactory or acceptable [= OK]:
'We're meeting at 8.30.' 'Okay, fine.'
looks/seems/sounds fine
In theory, the scheme sounds fine.
If you want to use cheese instead of chicken, that's fine.
'Do you want chili sauce on it?' 'No, it's fine as it is, thanks.'
I'm fine (thanks/thank you) spoken (=used when telling someone that you do not want any more when they offer you something)
'More coffee?' 'No, I'm fine, thanks.'
that's fine by me/that's fine with me etc spoken (=used when saying that you do not mind about something)
If Scott wanted to keep his life secret, that was fine by her.


in good health [= OK]:
'How are you?' 'Fine, thanks, how are you?'
I feel fine, really.

very good

[usually before noun] very good or of a very high standard:
Many people regard Beethoven's fifth symphony as his finest work.
He's a very fine player.
It's a fine idea.
Hatfield House is a fine example of Jacobean architecture.
The restaurant was chosen for its good food and fine wines.


bright and not raining:
If it's fine tomorrow we'll go out.
I hope it stays fine for you.


very thin or narrow:
Fine needles are inserted in the arm.
a fine thread
very fine hairs


[usually before noun] attractive, neat, and delicate:
fine china
Her dark hair accentuates her fine features (=nose, eyes, cheeks etc).


a) fine details, changes, differences etc are very small and therefore difficult to understand or notice:
We stayed up discussing the finer points of Marxist theory.
b) CS in small grains, pieces, or drops:
A fine drizzle started falling.
a mixture of fine and coarse breadcrumbs
c) fine material is made so that the spaces between the threads are very small:
fine netting
scarlet cloth with a very fine weave


[only before noun] especially spoken used humorously to say that someone or something is bad in some way:
That's another fine mess (=bad situation) he's got himself into.
You're a fine one to talk (=you are criticizing someone for something you do yourself).


sounding important and impressive, but probably not true or honest:
Only time will tell whether these fine sentiments will translate into action.

a fine man/woman etc

a good person that you respect:
Your father is a fine man, a real gentleman.

a fine line between something and something

if you say that there is a fine line between two different things, you mean that they are so similar that one can easily become the other:
There's a fine line between bravery and recklessness.

get something down to a fine art

to practise something so often that you become very skilled at it:
Mike had got the breakfast routine down to a fine art.

not to put too fine a point on it

informal used when you are criticizing something in a plain and direct way:
That's a real ' pub, not to put too fine a point on it.

finer feelings

someone's finer feelings are the moral values they have, such as love, honour, loyalty etc:
You can hardly expect such finer feelings in a thief.

a fine figure of a man/woman

literary someone who looks big, strong, and physically attractive:
In his portrait, Donlevy is a fine figure of a man.

somebody's finest hour

a time when someone is very successful, brave etc:
The tournament proved to be Gascoigne's finest hour.

➔ chance would be a fine thing

at chance1 (12)
very good: excellent, fantastic, wonderful, great, terrific, neat American English, superb, amazing, outstanding, brilliant, impressive, fine, first-class, out of this world

of good quality: high quality, top quality, superior, deluxe, classy

morally good: decent, virtuous, respectable, honourable British English/honorable American English, upright, beyond reproach

See also

Dictionary results for "fine"
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