Tender Ten"der, a. [Compar. {Tenderer}; superl. {Tenderest}.] [F. tendre, L. tener; probably akin to tenuis thin. See {Thin}.] 1. Easily impressed, broken, bruised, or injured; not firm or hard; delicate; as, tender plants; tender flesh; tender fruit. [1913 Webster]

2. Sensible to impression and pain; easily pained. [1913 Webster]

Our bodies are not naturally more tender than our faces. --L'Estrange. [1913 Webster]

3. Physically weak; not hardly or able to endure hardship; immature; effeminate. [1913 Webster]

The tender and delicate woman among you. --Deut. xxviii. 56. [1913 Webster]

4. Susceptible of the softer passions, as love, compassion, kindness; compassionate; pitiful; anxious for another's good; easily excited to pity, forgiveness, or favor; sympathetic. [1913 Webster]

The Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy. --James v. 11. [1913 Webster]

I am choleric by my nature, and tender by my temper. --Fuller. [1913 Webster]

5. Exciting kind concern; dear; precious. [1913 Webster]

I love Valentine, Whose life's as tender to me as my soul! --Shak. [1913 Webster]

6. Careful to save inviolate, or not to injure; -- with of. ``Tender of property.'' --Burke. [1913 Webster]

The civil authority should be tender of the honor of God and religion. --Tillotson. [1913 Webster]

7. Unwilling to cause pain; gentle; mild. [1913 Webster]

You, that are thus so tender o'er his follies, Will never do him good. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

8. Adapted to excite feeling or sympathy; expressive of the softer passions; pathetic; as, tender expressions; tender expostulations; a tender strain. [1913 Webster]

9. Apt to give pain; causing grief or pain; delicate; as, a tender subject. ``Things that are tender and unpleasing.'' --Bacon. [1913 Webster]

10. (Naut.) Heeling over too easily when under sail; -- said of a vessel. [1913 Webster]

Note: Tender is sometimes used in the formation of self-explaining compounds; as, tender-footed, tender-looking, tender-minded, tender-mouthed, and the like. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Delicate; effeminate; soft; sensitive; compassionate; kind; humane; merciful; pitiful. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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