Does the word "clin" has other usage than "clin d'oeil" ? Or is it only related to the eye.

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    Je ne crois pas. D'ailleurs Georges Perec a utilisé cette particularité dans son roman La Disparition, où il pouvait écrire clin sans autre précision. Un autre mot qu'il utilise est fur dans au fur et à mesure.
    – mouviciel
    May 10, 2016 at 12:55
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    Also used in "Bordages à clin", "Bateau à clins" for example and is also an acronym: fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clin. Other usages might be possible.
    – MorganFR
    May 10, 2016 at 12:58

3 Answers 3


Larousse also says "Biseau formé à l'extrémité de chacune des douelles du tonneau".

Which is "Bevel formed at the end of each of the cask staves".

I just learned it as I answer.


I believe it has to do with the verb cligner [des yeux] (to blink), which then gives the noun clin.
As @MorganFR pointed out, it is possible that it could refer to something else in a specific field (such as boat building).

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    More than that, it applies to any construct similar to the tile layout of a roof, like window blinds, boats, eyes and more.
    – MorganFR
    May 10, 2016 at 13:58

There are two homonyms spelled clin.

One is common and only used in the clin d'œil / clin d'yeux expressions. It comes from cligner.

The other one is quite rare and belongs in the ship building and similar vocabulary and means some kind of overlapping tiles. It comes from the Dutch klinken, meaning riveter/boulonner (to rivet/to bolt).

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