Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

The Best Internet Slang

three R's

plural noun
1.
reading, 'riting, and 'rithmetic, regarded as the fundamentals of education.
2.
the fundamentals, basic knowledge, or skills of any system or field:
the three R's of good government.
Origin of three R's
1820-1830
First recorded in 1820-30
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Idioms and Phrases with three R's

three R's

The fundamentals of education, as in It's a terrible school; the children are not even taught the three R's. It is widely believed that Sir William Curtis, an alderman who became Lord Mayor of London, once presented a toast to the three R's—reading, riting, and rithmetic—thereby betraying his illiteracy. In any event, the term was picked up by others and so used from the early 1800s on.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for three R's

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for three

8
7
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for three r's