Etymology: Middle English, from Old English pinn (akin to Old High German pfinn peg), perhaps from Latin pinna quill, feather — more at pen
Date: before 12th century
a. a piece of solid material (as wood or metal) used especially for fastening things together or as a support by which one thing may be suspended from another
b. obsolete the center peg of a target; also the center itself
c. something that resembles a pin especially in slender elongated form <an electrical connector pin> d. (1) one of the pieces constituting the target in various games (as bowling) (2) the peg at which a quoit is pitched (3) the staff of the flag marking a hole on a golf course e. a peg for regulating the tension of the strings of a musical instrument f. the part of a key stem that enters a lock g. a belaying pin 2. a. (1) a very thin small pointed metal pin with a head used especially for fastening cloth (2) little, trifle <bother them all! I don't care a pin about them — Bram Stoker> b. an ornament or emblem fastened to clothing with a pin c. (1) bobby pin (2) hairpin (3) safety pin 3. leg — usually used in plural <wobbly on his pins> 4. a fall in wrestling II. transitive verb (pinned; pinning) Date: 14th century 1. a. to fasten, join, or secure with a pin b. to hold fast or immobile c. to present (a young woman) with a fraternity pin as a pledge of affection 2. a. fasten <pinned his hopes on a miracle> <pin the blame on someone else> b. to assign the blame or responsibility for <pin the robbery on a night watchman> c. to define or determine clearly or precisely — usually used with down <it is hard to pin down exactly when things changed — Katharine Whittemore> 3. a. to make (a chess opponent's piece) unable to move without exposing the king to check or a valuable piece to capture b. of a wrestler to secure a fall over (an opponent) III. adjective Date: 1523 1. of or relating to a pin 2. of leather having a grain suggesting the heads of pins
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.