Definition of bin in English:


nounPlural bins

  • 1A receptacle in which to deposit rubbish.

    • ‘Last week I left several glass wine bottles in my green bin along with paper and cardboard.’
    • ‘He pointed it out to me and I walked across to the bin and deposited the package of shells.’
    • ‘The study showed that only 14 per cent of household rubbish bins contain absolutely no information of interest to fraudsters.’
    • ‘That amounts to 1500 tonnes of glass, plastic, paper and cans going into recycling bins rather than rubbish bags.’
    • ‘Bin wagons, rubbish bins and boxes are all in line for a major shake-up to smooth the way for kerbside recycling.’
    • ‘He tossed the little wooden stick in the recycling bin and stood up.’
    • ‘Just think if you recycled all of these materials you won't need to stand on your wheeled bin to squeeze that last bit of space out of it and you might get your lid the whole way down!’
    • ‘On your next visit to the supermarket take excess packaging and deposit in the rubbish bins in the store car park.’
    • ‘As Ian approached the bus stop, Mad Sam extricated himself from the litter bin and stood in the middle of the pavement, blocking Ian's path.’
    • ‘An electrified clothes drying rack, a guitar made out of an coffee tin, drums built from stainless steel colanders, pots and rubbish bins.’
    • ‘The level of organisation is very impressive, though I'm not sure about the symbolism of the count supervisors using an empty ballot box as a rubbish bin.’
    • ‘So chuck the half-used bottles of poison in the bin and stop giving your money to the multi-nationals with their hugely profitable global brands.’
    • ‘Was he planning on using one of the empty bottles in the bin to store some chemicals?’
    • ‘Christmas cards can be taken along to Tesco or WH Smith, where recycling bins will stand in all their York stores.’
    • ‘As part of the project, every home in the borough will have a green box for glass, tins, foil trays and plastic bottles, a white bag for paper waste and a grey bin for other household rubbish.’
    • ‘In addition one resident actually had somebody put a sack of rubbish in their bin when they had it left out for collection.’
    • ‘After the first day of the strike many city centre streets were filled with litter as protesters tipped over rubbish bins and emptied refuse bags.’
    • ‘So it must have been gremlins that filled my rubbish bin with pieces of torn cardboard and disposable coffee cups.’
    • ‘Each week, on the same day, either the black bin with household rubbish and the blue box with tins and plastic were collected, or the brown bin for garden rubbish and the green box for paper.’
    • ‘Refuse collectors are instructed only to collect rubbish left in the bins and no other bags, in an attempt to reduce landfill and encourage recycling.’
    1. 1.1with modifier A capacious receptacle for storing a specified substance.
      ‘a compost bin’
      • ‘We have a worm farm and compost bin, have planted fruit trees and vegetables and plan to plant up an area of natives next week.’
      • ‘Check the dollar stores for plastic bins, baskets and containers.’
      • ‘A big stand of grain bins; they are scowling at the wind, each of them.’
      • ‘Each bin stores a particular variety of packaged multiple-dose pharmaceutical.’
      • ‘I was shopping in a health food store that had open bins and this man was grabbing handfuls of nuts in his open hands and eating them before going to the counter to pay for them.’
      • ‘Each bin can store one type of otherwise homeless stuff.’
      • ‘Those burgeoning sprouts on the gnarly bulbs piled in bins at a garden store can produce five or six flowers, each as big as your hand.’
      • ‘Using separate bins to store boarders' grain helps track the number of sacks you use.’
      • ‘Once the sequence is complete, the test equipment sends the results to the component handler, which bins the part and places another in the fixture.’
      • ‘York Rotters, a band of council-trained volunteers, showed festival visitors how they can reduce household waste by up to a third by purchasing a discounted compost bin.’
      • ‘The stores were decorated with bins of coffee beans, photos of coffee trees, and shelves of gleaming coffee paraphernalia.’
      • ‘There have also been problems with the brown bin or composting bin service, with a handful of households contaminating it with dead animals and non-recyclable waste.’
      • ‘The scheme is designed to encourage residents to take part in council schemes, which include a compost bin offer and nappy laundering services.’
      • ‘We also started boiling up the maize and storing this in huge bins ready for piling into the swims in front of the site to get the shoals of fish munching.’
      • ‘It's carried to market, stored, arranged in bins, cooked, brought to the table, and eaten.’
      • ‘Children can sort through the manageable bins without standing on tiptoes or upsetting a whole shelf.’
      • ‘I survey the space where we're standing, shelves and bins of different components.’
      • ‘When you go to bargain bins in record stores, you can get Blondie and The Beatles and you can go back every day and get something new and good.’
      • ‘Any longer than that and I'm liable to drop the jeans in the nearest bargain bin basket and run out of the shop empty handed.’
      • ‘Use large colorful stackable plastic bins to store toys, linens, out of season clothes and decorations, etc.’
      • ‘So I laid some permeable membrane down to stop the weeds from growing upwards and emptied the contents of the big compost bin into the smaller compost bin.’
      container, receptacle, holder
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 A partitioned stand for storing bottles of wine.
      • ‘I was a little embarrassed, so I bought a bottle out of the bargain bin and I'll be damned if the thing was nearly impossible to get open.’
      • ‘The better design is a mixture of bins and bottle-deep shelves with a few 12-bottle waisthigh racks.’
      • ‘Just as it turned dark we discovered the wine bin was bare so we hopped down to replenish our stocks.’
      • ‘Set apart from the shelves of local stock, like aliens at an airport, a bin boldly featured wines from California.’
      • ‘If you're wagering your hard-earned six bucks on an Uzbeki Pinot from a wine bin don't expect the earth to move when you drink it.’
      • ‘I know a lot about wine, but there are 1,000 bins on the Gordon Ramsay list and at least a third of the producers are people I've never heard of.’
      • ‘This usually entails storing the bottles horizontally, ideally in a wine rack so that individual bottles can easily be extracted, or in a bin full of wines of the same sort.’
      • ‘Look out for the bargain bin of superb wines in the bar.’
      framework, frame, stand, holder, shelf, form, trestle, support, box, bunker, container, structure
      View synonyms
  • 2Statistics
    Each of a series of ranges of numerical value into which data are sorted in statistical analysis.

    • ‘For clarity of presentation, values were grouped in bins and distances >100 km were omitted.’
    • ‘The bin analysis moved forward point-to-point to calculate means and variances.’
    • ‘FIG. 3. - Average ECI values for genes in different bins of expression breadth.’
    • ‘However, the mode of rise times at the second bin of the histogram was suspect.’
    • ‘To do this, each distribution was binned and compared to a reference distribution given by the average value in each bin.’
    • ‘Mean values and 95% confidence intervals for F are plotted against mean density values for each bin.’
    • ‘This value is shown in the second bin from the left in the same histogram for comparison.’
    • ‘In 1831, August Ferdinand Möbius put numbers into 3 bins, as a new type of function.’
    • ‘All other markers are subsequently placed in the bin into which they best fit by statistical procedures without perturbing the overall map order.’
    • ‘The range of each bin varied such that each one contained 1/9 of the positions.’
    • ‘We performed the same statistical analysis on these synteny bins as described above for the human-mouse data.’
    • ‘The spike in the rightmost bin of the series is due to the occurrence of an appreciable number of chromosomes without crossovers at that marker spacing.’
    • ‘We calculated the choice proportions of the higher rewarding flower types for bins of 50 simulated visits.’
    • ‘Ogilvie et al. divided trials into quartile bins based on the distribution of reaction time latencies.’
    • ‘A major disadvantage has been that it is not straightforward to construct a histogram with log bins when the original data have been digitized.’
    • ‘We group the posterior probabilities into bins and in each bin calculate the proportion of sites truly under positive selection.’
    • ‘This value is shown in the left-most bin in the histogram of Fig.4 A.’
    • ‘Plotted is the maximum bin length value averaged over 50 simulated populations.’
    • ‘Categorizing into bins is labor intensive with inevitable arbitrariness that may vary between laboratories.’
    • ‘However, it is usually at one of the first few bins in the histograms, where it may be due to failure of detection of very brief events.’


Old English bin(n), binne, of Celtic origin; related to Welsh ben ‘cart’. The original meaning was ‘receptacle’ in a general sense; also ‘a receptacle for provender in a stable’ and ‘container for grain, bread, or other foodstuffs’. The sense ‘receptacle for rubbish’ dates from the mid 19th century.