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See more synonyms for thatch on Thesaurus.com
  1. Also thatching. a material, as straw, rushes, leaves, or the like, used to cover roofs, grain stacks, etc.
  2. a covering of such a material.
  3. the leaves of various palms that are used for thatching.
  4. something resembling thatch on a roof, especially thick hair covering the head: a thatch of unruly red hair.
  5. Horticulture. a tightly bound layer of dead grass, including leaves, stems, and roots, that builds up on the soil surface at the base of the living grass of a lawn.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to cover with or as if with thatch.
  2. Horticulture. to remove thatch from (a lawn); dethatch.
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Origin of thatch

before 900; (v.) Middle English thacchen, variant (with a from thak > dial. thack) of thecchen, Old English theccan to cover, hide; cognate with Dutch dekken (see deck), German decken, Old Norse thekja; (noun) Middle English thacche, variant (with ch from the v.) of thak
Related formsthatch·less, adjectivethatch·y, adjectivere·thatch, verb (used with object)


  1. Edward. Teach, Edward.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for thatch

mane, wig, hairstyle, grass, fur, haircut, fiber, wool, strand, eyebrow, tangle, shock, thatch, tresses, lock, tress, down, cut, tuft, bristle

Examples from the Web for thatch

Contemporary Examples of thatch

Historical Examples of thatch

  • Always used of the gable loft, you know, and the wind above the thatch.

    The Manxman

    Hall Caine

  • Henry has often been on the thatch of the barn and never got hurt.

    The Fairchild Family

    Mary Martha Sherwood

  • I've seen them set fire to the thatch of the widow and childless.


    Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer

  • The same, the very same it is, save that the thatch has been renewed!

    St. Cuthbert's

    Robert E. Knowles

  • Thatch well sodden with winter's rain does not blaze or crackle.

    Two Sides of the Face

    Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

British Dictionary definitions for thatch


    1. Also called: thatchinga roofing material that consists of straw, reed, etc
    2. a roof made of such a material
  1. anything resembling this, such as the hair of the head
  2. Also called: thatch palm any of various palms with leaves suitable for thatching
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  1. to cover (a roof) with thatch
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Derived Formsthatcher, nounthatchless, adjectivethatchy, adjective

Word Origin for thatch

Old English theccan to cover; related to thæc roof, Old Saxon thekkian to thatch, Old High German decchen, Old Norse thekja
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for thatch


Old English þeccan "to cover," related to þæc "roof, thatching material," from Proto-Germanic *thakan (cf. Old Saxon thekkian, Old Norse þekja, Old Frisian thekka, Middle Dutch decken, Old High German decchen, German decken "to cover"), from PIE *(s)tog-/*(s)teg- "cover" (see stegosaurus).

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Old English þæc "roof, thatch," from the source of thatch (v.). Cf. Old Norse þak, Old Frisian thek, Middle Dutch dak "roof," Old High German dah, German Dach "roof."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper