General English


  • noun a large container for liquid, part of a spraying machine


  • An acoustic delay line, such as a mercury delay line, which uses a recirculating fluid as the transmission medium.
  • A capsule or container which holds a liquid. For example, that holding a pool of mercury in a mercury switch.
  • A large container or reservoir for storing or holding fluids.

Media Studies

  • noun a large tray or container for processing a number of sheets of film together
  • noun a lightproof container for developing film, designed so that processing chemicals can be poured in and out without light entering


  • noun an armoured fighting vehicle fitted with tracks and a gun
  • noun a large container or structure designed to hold liquid or gas
  • noun part of an aircraft or ship or vehicle which contains its fuel


  • noun a firearm, handgun. A hyperbolic term occasionally used by criminals and law enforcers.
  • noun a police car or van. The word is used in this way by ironic or self-dramatising police officers.


  • noun a large, usually metal container for liquids

Origin & History of “tank”

Tank ‘water-storage container’ originated in India, where it denoted a ‘pond’. It was borrowed from a local word, such as Gujarati tānkh or Marathi tānken ‘pond, cistern’. these in turn probably went back to Sanskrit tadāga ‘pond, lake’, which was of Dravidian origin. The word was applied as a secret code name to the new armoured vehicle at the end of 1915, supposedly because it was thought to resemble a benzene tank.