Etymology: Middle English, from Old English; akin to Old High German zopf tip, tuft of hair
Date: before 12th century
(1) the highest point, level, or part of something ; summit, crown
(2) the head or top of the head — used especially in the phrase top to toe
(3) the head of a plant; especially the aboveground part of a plant having edible roots <beet tops> (4) a garment worn on the upper body b. (1) the highest or uppermost region or part (2) the upper end, edge, or surface 2. a fitted, integral, or attached part or unit serving as an upper piece, lid, or covering 3. a. a platform surrounding the head of a lower mast that serves to spread the topmast rigging, strengthen the mast, and furnish a standing place for men aloft b. a comparable part of the superstructure; especially such a part on a warship used as a fire-control station or antiaircraft gun platform 4. a. the highest degree or pitch conceivable or attained ; acme, pinnacle b. the loudest or highest range of a sound 5. a. the part that is nearest in space or time to the source or beginning b. the first half of an inning in baseball 6. a. (1) the highest position (as in rank or achievement) (2) a person or thing at the top b. plural aces and kings in a hand or the three highest honors in a suit 7. the choicest part ; cream, pick 8. a forward spin given to a ball (as in golf or billiards) by striking it on or near the top or above the center; also the stroke so given 9. a fundamental quark that has an electric charge of + 2/3 and a measured energy of approximately 175 GeV; also the flavor characterizing this particle • topped adjective II. verb (topped; topping) Date: 1509 transitive verb 1. to remove or cut the top of; especially to shorten or remove the top of (a plant) ; pinch 1b 2. a. to cover with a top or on the top ; provide, form, or serve as a top for b. to supply with a decorative or protective finish or final touch c. to resupply or refill to capacity — usually used with off <topped off the tank> d. to complete the basic structure of (as a high-rise building) by putting on a cap or uppermost section — usually used with out or off e. to bring to an end or climax — usually used with off <the event was topped off with a relay race — Paula Rodenas> 3. a. to be or become higher than ; overtop <tops the previous record> b. to be superior to ; excel, surpass c. to gain ascendancy over ; dominate 4. a. to rise to, reach, or be at the top of b. to go over the top of ; clear, surmount 5. to strike (a ball) above the center thereby imparting topspin intransitive verb 1. to make an end, finish, or conclusion 2. to reach a summit or crest — usually used with off or out III. adjective Date: 1556 1. of, relating to, or being at the top ; uppermost 2. chief, leading <one of the world's top journalists> 3. of the highest quality, amount, or degree <top value> <top form> IV. noun Etymology: Middle English, from Old English Date: 14th century a commonly cylindrical or conoidal device that has a tapering point on which it is made to spin and that is used especially as a toy
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.