General English

  • noun a container for putting rubbish in
  • noun a container for keeping things in
  • verb to throw something away into a rubbish bin


  • noun a large container for storage, e.g. a maize bin or a bin for holding wool in a shearing shed


  • noun a separate section of shelves in a warehouse


  • noun a tray used to hold a supply of paper ready to be fed into a printer


  • A storage container, usually for loose materials such as sand, stone, or crushed rock.


  • noun a pocket, usually in trousers. This example of the jargon of cat burglars was recorded in FHM magazine in April 1996.
  • noun a mental hospital or asylum. A shortening of loony bin.
  • verb to throw away, reject. A sharper or more imperious version of ‘chuck it’ or ‘dump it’ is ‘bin it’, heard since the late 1980s, especially in offices and in a broader business context.


  • noun a section in a warehouse, store or wine cellar


  • a set of racks or shelves with compartments for storing bottles of wine in a cellar

Origin & History of “bin”

Old English had the word bine or binne (it meant ‘manger’), but it is not clear where it got it from. perhaps the most likely source is a word, *benna, in the Celtic language of the pre-Anglo-Saxon inhabitants of Britain (Welsh has ben ‘cart’). But it may also have come from medieval Latin benna, which gave French benne ‘large basket’. In English, the modern sense ‘storage container’ does not fully emerge until the 14th century.