Definition of pine knot in US English:

pine knot


  • 1A knot of pinewood, especially when burned as fuel for a fire or to provide illumination.

  • 2Used in comparisons or similes, with allusion to the toughness or hardness of a pine knot.

  • 3Figurative. A person or thing considered to be as tough or enduring as a pine knot. Now rare.


Mid 17th century; earliest use found in John Winthrop (1588–1649), colonial governor. From pine + knot.


pine knot

/ˈpʌɪn nɒt/