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If something is tender, it means that it is soft or delicate in substance, gentle, or delicate or weak in constitution. Something or someone easily moved to compassion is called tender and so is someone sentimental or overly sentimental. Tender also refers to something young or immature. If a matter is tender, it means that it should be handled with care. As a verb, to tender means ‘to present something formally for acceptance.’ The related noun tender refers to the act of tendering, to something offered or tendered, especially money, and also to a written offer.

Example sentences

Words often used with tender

legal tender: anything that may legally be offered as payment. Example: “Only US dollars are officially legal tender in the US.”

Additional information

A tender can also be a person who tends to something. The most common use of tender as a noun with this sense nowadays would be in the job title bartender.

Did you know?

Tender loving care: often abbreviated to TLC, means kindness and affection. Example: “My wife has been working too hard lately and is feeling run down. I think I’d better give her some TLC.” You often see this abbreviation in lonely hearts ads (advertisements people put in newspapers or, nowadays, online when they are single and looking for a romantic partner).

Other forms

tenderly (adverb), tenderness (noun)

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