Etymology: Middle English, from Old English, thing, assembly; akin to Old High German ding thing, assembly, Gothic theihs time
Date: before 12th century
a. a matter of concern ; affair <many things to do> b. plural state of affairs in general or within a specified or implied sphere <things are improving> c. a particular state of affairs ; situation <look at this thing another way> d. event, circumstance <that shooting was a terrible thing> 2. a. deed, act, accomplishment <do great things> b. a product of work or activity <likes to build things> c. the aim of effort or activity <the thing is to get well> 3. a. a separate and distinct individual quality, fact, idea, or usually entity b. the concrete entity as distinguished from its appearances c. a spatial entity d. an inanimate object distinguished from a living being 4. a. plural possessions, effects <pack your things> b. whatever may be possessed or owned or be the object of a right c. an article of clothing <not a thing to wear> d. plural equipment or utensils especially for a particular purpose <bring the tea things> 5. an object or entity not precisely designated or capable of being designated <use this thing> 6. a. detail, point <checks every little thing> b. a material or substance of a specified kind <avoid fatty things> 7. a. a spoken or written observation or point b. idea, notion <says the first thing he thinks of> c. a piece of news or information <couldn't get a thing out of him> 8. individual <not a living thing in sight> 9. the proper or fashionable way of behaving, talking, or dressing — used with the 10. a. a mild obsession or phobia <has a thing about driving>; also the object of such an obsession or phobia b. something (as an activity) that makes a strong appeal to the individual ; forte, specialty <letting students do their own thing — Newsweek> <I think travelling is very much a novelist's thing — Philip Larkin>
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.