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1. To focus or apply one's attention to someone or something; to take care of someone or something. You really need to tend to the lawn—it's getting pretty overgrown! I'm taking some time off of work to tend to my daughter while she is sick.
2. To be inclined or have a tendency to do something. Sarah has a lot more experience than me in this aspect of the business, so I tend to defer to her opinions on such matters. I tend not to believe rumors like these until I see some actual evidence.
tend toward (something)
To have a tendency or be inclined or disposed to display some behavior or characteristic. The author's work tends toward the harsh, gloomy realities of the world, but she always maintains a vein of persistent hopefulness in all her stories. His fiscal policies tend toward conservatism, while his social policies tend toward liberalism.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
tend to do something
to have a tendency to do something. Jill tends to play with her hair while she works. Sam tends to say things like that when he is upset.
tend toward something
to have a tendency to display a certain characteristic. Roger tends toward the dramatic. We all tend toward bad humor during bad weather.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. Apply one's attention, as in We should tend to our business, which is to teach youngsters. This term uses tend in the sense of "attend." [1300s]
2. Be disposed or inclined, as in We tend to believe whatever we are told. This term uses tend in the sense of "have a tendency." [c. 1600]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
To apply one's attention to something; attend to something: I must tend to my chores before I can go outside.
1. To have a tendency toward something: Most kinds of paint tend toward peeling over time.
2. To be disposed or inclined toward something: Many children tend toward exaggeration.
3. To move or extend in some direction: Our ship tended toward the northern coast.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.