- to separate the grain or seeds from (a cereal plant or the like) by some mechanical means, as by beating with a flail or by the action of a threshing machine.
- to beat as if with a flail.
- to thresh wheat, grain, etc.
- to deliver blows as if with a flail.
- the act of threshing.
- thresh out/over. thrash(def 12).
Origin of thresh
Examples from the Web for thresh
But fortunately he came up on the surface to thresh about some more.Tales of Fishes
The Moujik began to thresh: from every sheaf he got a peck of grain.Russian Fairy Tales
W. R. S. Ralston
All his optimism failed to thresh a grain of hope from the chaff of his postulations.Cabbages and Kings
He fell with a great roar, and began to thresh about in the bushes.The Young Alaskans on the Trail
Be sensible; stack what you can, but don't wait to thresh or grind.The Reckoning
Robert W. Chambers
- to beat or rub stalks of ripe corn or a similar crop either with a hand implement or a machine to separate the grain from the husks and straw
- (tr) to beat or strike
- (intr often foll by about) to toss and turn; thrash
- the act of threshing
Word Origin and History for thresh
Old English þrescan, þerscan "to beat, sift grain by trampling or beating," from Proto-Germanic *threskanan "to thresh," originally "to tread, to stamp noisily" (cf. Middle Dutch derschen, Dutch dorschen, Old High German dreskan, German dreschen, Old Norse þreskja, Gothic þriskan), from PIE root *tere- "to rub, turn" (see throw).
The basic notion is of treading out wheat under foot of men or oxen, later, with the advent of the flail, the word acquired its modern extended sense of "to knock, beat, strike." The original Germanic sense is suggested by the use of the word in Romanic languages that borrowed it, e.g. Italian trescare "to prance," Old French treschier "to dance," Spanish triscar "to stamp the feet."