grain

When carpenters sand a piece of wood, they "go with the grain." Grain is the texture on piece of wood, which often forms long patterns that show the direction in which the tree grew.

You may have heard someone say "there's a grain of truth to that" when referring to an outrageous story that has a tiny bit of truth to it. A grain can also be a speck or a particle — the tiniest bit of something. Don't confuse this with another definition of grain, the kind you find in your bread — wheat, oats, alfalfa, and so on. Check out all the grains in the ten-grain bread next time you're in the bakery!

Primary Meanings of grain

1.
n
a cereal grass
2.
nv
a relatively small granular particle of a substance
form into grains
3.
n
1/7000 pound; equals a troy grain or 64.799 milligrams
4.
nv
the side of leather from which the hair has been removed
paint (a surface) to make it look like stone or wood
Full Definitions of grain
1

n a cereal grass

“wheat is a grain that is grown in Kansas”
Type of:
cereal, cereal grass
grass whose starchy grains are used as food: wheat; rice; rye; oats; maize; buckwheat; millet

n dry seed-like fruit produced by the cereal grasses: e.g. wheat, barley, Indian corn

Synonyms:
caryopsis
Types:
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amaranth
seed of amaranth plants used as a native cereal in Central and South America
barleycorn
a grain of barley
wheat berry
a grain of wheat
kernel
a single whole grain of a cereal
rye
the seed of the cereal grass
corn
the dried grains or kernels or corn used as animal feed or ground for meal
Type of:
seed
a small hard fruit

n foodstuff prepared from the starchy grains of cereal grasses

Synonyms:
cereal, food grain
Types:
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corn, edible corn
ears of corn that can be prepared and served for human food
grist
grain intended to be or that has been ground
groats
the hulled and crushed grain of various cereals
millet
small seed of any of various annual cereal grasses especially Setaria italica
barley, barleycorn
a grain of barley
buckwheat
grain ground into flour
wheat, wheat berry
grains of common wheat; sometimes cooked whole or cracked as cereal; usually ground into flour
oat
seed of the annual grass Avena sativa (spoken of primarily in the plural as `oats')
rice
grains used as food either unpolished or more often polished
Indian rice, wild rice
grains of aquatic grass of North America
malt
a cereal grain (usually barley) that is kiln-dried after having been germinated by soaking in water; used especially in brewing and distilling
green corn, sweet corn
corn that can be eaten as a vegetable while still young and soft
hominy
hulled corn with the bran and germ removed
popcorn
small kernels of corn exploded by heat
pearl barley
barley ground into small round pellets
bulghur, bulgur, bulgur wheat
parched crushed wheat
cracked wheat
grains of wheat that have been crushed into small pieces
brown rice
unpolished rice retaining the yellowish-brown outer layer
polished rice, white rice
having husk or outer brown layers removed
paddy
rice in the husk either gathered or still in the field
wort
unfermented or fermenting malt
Type of:
food product, foodstuff
a substance that can be used or prepared for use as food
2

n a relatively small granular particle of a substance

“a grain of sand”
“a grain of sugar”
Types:
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granule
a tiny grain
microsome
a tiny granule in the cytoplasm that is where protein synthesis takes place under the direction of mRNA
chondrule
small granule (of e.g. chrysolite) found in some meteoric rocks
plastid
any of various small particles in the cytoplasm of the cells of plants and some animals containing pigments or starch or oil or protein
Type of:
atom, corpuscle, molecule, mote, particle, speck
(nontechnical usage) a tiny piece of anything

n the smallest possible unit of anything

“there was a grain of truth in what he said”
“he does not have a grain of sense”
Type of:
littleness, smallness
the property of having a relatively small size

n the physical composition of something (especially with respect to the size and shape of the small constituents of a substance)

“sand of a fine grain
“a stone of coarse grain
Synonyms:
texture
Type of:
composition, constitution, make-up, makeup, physical composition
the way in which someone or something is composed

v form into grains

Synonyms:
granulate
Type of:
form
assume a form or shape

v become granular

Synonyms:
granulate
Type of:
change form, change shape, deform
assume a different shape or form

v thoroughly work in

“His hands were grained with dirt”
Synonyms:
ingrain
Type of:
penetrate, perforate
pass into or through, often by overcoming resistance
3

n 1/7000 pound; equals a troy grain or 64.799 milligrams

Type of:
avoirdupois unit
any of the units of the avoirdupois system of weights

n a weight unit used for pearls or diamonds: 50 mg or 1/4 carat

Synonyms:
metric grain
Type of:
metric weight unit, weight unit
a decimal unit of weight based on the gram

n 1/60 dram; equals an avoirdupois grain or 64.799 milligrams

Type of:
troy unit
any of the unit of the troy system of weights
apothecaries' unit, apothecaries' weight
any weight unit used in pharmacy; an ounce is equal to 480 grains and a pound is equal to 12 ounces
4

n the side of leather from which the hair has been removed

Type of:
leather
an animal skin made smooth and flexible by removing the hair and then tanning

n the direction, texture, or pattern of fibers found in wood or leather or stone or in a woven fabric

“saw the board across the grain
Types:
wood grain, woodgrain, woodiness
texture produced by the fibers in wood
graining, woodgraining
a texture like that of wood
Type of:
texture
the characteristic appearance of a surface having a tactile quality

v paint (a surface) to make it look like stone or wood

Type of:
paint
apply paint to; coat with paint

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