(1)   A separate and self-contained entity
(2)   An action
"How could you do such a thing?"
(3)   An artifact
"How does this thing work?"
(4)   An entity that is not named specifically
"I couldn't tell what the thing was"
(5)   Any attribute or quality considered as having its own existence
"The thing I like about her is ..."
(6)   A vaguely specified concern
"Several matters to attend to"
"It is none of your affair"
"Things are going well"
(7)   A special abstraction
"A thing of the spirit"
"Things of the heart"
(8)   A special objective
"The thing is to stay in bounds"
(9)   A statement regarded as an object
"To say the same thing in other terms"
"How can you say such a thing?"
(10)   An event
"A funny thing happened on the way to the..."
(11)   A persistent illogical feeling of desire or aversion
"He has a thing about seafood"
"She has a thing about him"
(12)   A special situation
"This thing has got to end"
"It is a remarkable thing"


Old Norse þing (Swedish ting), cognate with Old English þing ( > English thing).


  1. A public assembly or council in a Scandinavian country
    • 1997, Before Thorstein left home, he and Asgerd decided to take Arinbjorn's gift, the silk cloak, out of Egil's chest, and Thorstein wore it to the Thing. — ‘Egil's Saga’, tr. Bernard Scudder, The Sagas of Icelanders (Penguin 2001, p. 168)