Home      Discussion      Topics      Dictionary      Almanac
Signup       Login




(1)   Something of sentimental value
(2)   A metal or plastic disk that can be used (as a substitute for coins) in slot machines
(3)   An individual instance of a type of symbol
"The word`error' contains three tokens of `r'"


From , from . Cognate with Dutch , German , Swedish .


  1. Something or someone serving as an expression of something else.
    It was a mere token payment. He still owes us.
  2. Done as an indication or a pledge; perfunctory, minimal or merely symbolic.
    He made a token tap on the brake pedal at the stop sign.
    • 1927, Arthur Robert Burns, Money and Monetary Policy in Early Times, page 393
      If the as had been reduced to a token in 240 BC, it was now a little more token than before.
    • 2000, Cheris Kramarae, Dale Spender, Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women, Page 176
      There are still many churches where the participation of women is token.
    • 2008, Adrian Blomfield, The Daily Telegraph, Has Russia got a new Stalin?, March 31, 2008
      Just to be on the safe side, the The Kremlin has also banned any of Putin’s serious critics from standing. Three unelectable misfits have been allowed to mount token challenges.


  1. Something serving as an expression of something else; sign, symbol.
  2. A keepsake or souvenir.
    Please accept this bustier as a token of our time together.
  3. A piece of stamped metal used as a substitute for money.
    Subway tokens are being replaced by magnetic cards.
  4. A particular thing to which a concept applies.
  5. An atomic piece of data, such as a word, for which a meaning may be inferred during parsing. Also called a symbol.
    • 2004, Randall Hyde, Write Great Code: Understanding the Machine, page 68
      For each lexeme, the scanner creates a small data package known as a token and passes this data package on to the parser.


  1. To symbolize or instantiate

    • ----


      1. Token, an atomic piece of data.

      Usage notes

      There is no general agreement about the gender. In the south, people tend to use ‘het’, whereas in the north, ‘de’ is preferred.