Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Sense: 1
Date: 1500-1600
Origin: tender
Sense: 2-3
Date: 1400-1500
Origin: TEND
Sense: 2-3
Origin:

tender

3 noun
     
tender3 [countable]
1BB especially British English a formal statement of the price you would charge for doing a job or providing goods or services [= bid American English]
Our bid was the lowest tender.
put something out to tender British English (=to ask different companies to say how much they will charge for doing a particular job)
The contract for building the houses will be put out to tender.
2TTW a small boat that takes people or supplies between the shore and a larger boat
3TTT part of a steam train used for carrying coal and water for the train

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