Meaning of tarry


To tarry is to linger and take your time leaving. If you really like going to Sally’s Diner for dessert, you might tarry over coffee and end up leaving after they’ve closed the kitchen.

The verb tarry is perfect for describing what happens when those relatives that you see once a year come to your house for lunch and never seem to leave. When people tarry they stick around and take a long time to depart, sometimes lurking or loitering, or sometimes enjoying each other’s company. Tarry can also mean to hang around a place without purpose. You might tarry in the park until the day is fading and you have to go home.

Definitions of tarry
  1. verb

    leave slowly and hesitantly



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    type of:

    go away, go forth, leave

    go away from a place

  2. verb

    stay longer than you should


    footle, hang around, lallygag, linger, loaf, loiter, lollygag, lounge, lurk, mess about, mill about, mill around

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    lurch, prowl

    loiter about, with no apparent aim
    type of:


    have the quality of being; (copula, used with an adjective or a predicate noun)

  3. adjective

    having the characteristics of pitch or tar


    pitchy, resinous, resiny


    tending to adhere

Word Family

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