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tent

tent, portable shelter of canvas, skins, felt, matting, or other material usually supported by poles and used chiefly by nomads, hunters, and campers. Tents have been used by pastoral peoples since ancient times and are mentioned in the Old Testament and in Homer. Persian tents, usually circular, were early noted for rich hangings and rugs. Army tents developed by ancient peoples include the small, skin-covered tents of the Greeks and the Roman tents of canvas supported by two upright poles and a ridgepole. Medieval military tents were round or oval and were often lavishly hung with silks or furs. Army tents were widely used in Europe in the 17th and 18th cent. but are now employed chiefly for training purposes. Modern types include bell tents with a central pole; the A tents with sides sloping from a ridgepole; and the marquee, a large field tent, used for mess or hospital shelters. Smaller tents for recreational camping and backpacking include dome, "flashlight," and other designs that typically use shock-corded aluminum or fiberglass poles and lightweight fabrics. The yurt, a circular, felt-covered structure of latticework surmounted by curved poles fitted at the top into a ring forming a smoke hole, has long been used by nomads of the Asian steppes. Desert tribespeople of W Asia and North Africa generally use a ridgepole tent. One of the simplest tent forms is the windbreak, which was mainly used in Patagonia. See also tepee.

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tent

tent.
1. Portable tension structure in which the supports (usually a wooden pole or poles) both carry and are held in place by a membrane of canvas, skins, or cloth stretched over them and fixed by means of pegs driven into the ground.

2. Portable compression structure in which a self-supporting frame or armature is constructed over which a protective membrane is draped. Tents are of great antiquity as a type, and very elaborate examples have evolved for religious, ceremonial, or status reasons. Tensile structures, developed from tent-like forms, have been experimented with by several architects in C20.

Bibliography

Drew (1979);
Faegre (1979);
Prussin et al. (1995);
Jane Turner (1996)

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tent

tent / tent/ • n. a portable shelter made of cloth, supported by one or more poles and stretched tight by cords or loops attached to pegs driven into the ground. ∎  Med. short for oxygen tent. • v. 1. [tr.] cover with or as if with a tent: the garden had been completely tented over for supper. ∎  arrange in a shape that looks like a tent: Tim tented his fingers. ∎  [as adj.] (tented) composed of or provided with tents: they were living in large tented camps. 2. [intr.] (esp. of traveling circus people) live in a tent.

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tent

tent1 portable shelter of canvas, etc. XIII. — (O)F. tente :- Rom. *tenta n. pl. used as fem. of *tentum, for L. tentōrium tent, f. tent-, pp. stem of tendere stretch, TEND2, based on the use of phr. pelles tendere stretch out skins, in the sense ‘pitch tents’.
Hence tent vb., tented (see -ED1, -ED2) XVII.

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tent

tent2 †probe; roll of material for searching a wound XXV. — (O)F. tente, f. tenter :- L. temptāre feel, try, TEMPT.

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tent

tent3 deep-red Spanish wine. XVI (tynt). — Sp. tinto dark-coloured :- L. tinctus, pp. of tingere, dye, TINGE.

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tent

tentant, Brabant, Brandt, brant, cant, enceinte, extant, gallant, Kant, levant, pant, pointe, pointes, rant, scant •confidant • commandant • hierophant •Rembrandt • Amirante •gallivant •aren't, aslant, aunt, can't, chant, courante, détente, enchant, entente, grant, implant, Nantes, plant, shan't, slant, supplant, transplant, underplant •plainchant • ashplant • eggplant •house plant • restaurant •debutant, debutante •absent, accent, anent, ascent, assent, augment, bent, cement, cent, circumvent, consent, content, dent, event, extent, ferment, foment, forewent, forwent, frequent, gent, Ghent, Gwent, lament, leant, lent, meant, misrepresent, misspent, outwent, pent, percent, pigment, rent, scent, segment, sent, spent, stent, Stoke-on-Trent, Tashkent, tent, torment, Trent, underspent, underwent, vent, went •orient • comment • portent •malcontent

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