in the third place; thirdly.

Origin of third

before 900; Middle English thirde, Old English (north) thirda, variant of thridda; cognate with Dutch derde, German dritte, Old Norse thrithi, Gothic thridja, Greek trítos, Latin tertius, Sanskrit tṛtīya. See three
Related formsthird·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for third

triennial, tertiary, tertian

Examples from the Web for third

Contemporary Examples of third

Historical Examples of third

British Dictionary definitions for third


adjective (usually prenominal)

  1. coming after the second and preceding the fourth in numbering or counting order, position, time, etc; being the ordinal number of three: often written 3rd
  2. (as noun)he arrives on the third; the third got a prize
rated, graded, or ranked below the second level
denoting the third from lowest forward ratio of a gearbox in a motor vehicle


  1. one of three equal or nearly equal parts of an object, quantity, etc
  2. (as modifier)a third part
the fraction equal to one divided by three (1/3)
the forward ratio above second of a gearbox in a motor vehicle. In some vehicles it is the top gear
  1. the interval between one note and another three notes away from it counting inclusively along the diatonic scale
  2. one of two notes constituting such an interval in relation to the otherSee also interval (def. 5), major (def. 15), minor (def. 4d)
British an honours degree of the third and usually the lowest classFull term: third class honours degree
(plural) goods of a standard lower than that of seconds


Also: thirdly in the third place

sentence connector

Also: thirdly as the third point: linking what follows with the previous statements as in a speech or argument
Derived Formsthirdly, adverb

Word Origin for third

Old English thirda, variant of thridda; related to Old Frisian thredda, Old Saxon thriddio, Old High German drittio, Old Norse thrithi, Latin tertius
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 third

Old English metathesis of þridda, from Proto-Germanic *thridjas (cf. Old Frisian thredda, Old Saxon thriddio, Middle Low German drudde, Dutch derde, Old High German dritto, German dritte, Old Norse þriðe, Gothic þridja), from PIE *tritjos (cf. Sanskrit trtiyas, Avestan thritya, Greek tritos, Latin tertius, Old Church Slavonic tretiji, Lithuanian trecias, Old Irish triss).

Related to Old English þreo (see three). Metathesis of thrid into third is attested from c.950 in Northumbria, but thrid was prevalent up to 16c. The noun meaning "third part of anything" is recorded from late 14c. Third rail in electric railway sense is recorded from 1890. Third World War as a possibility first recorded 1947. Third-rate "of poor quality" is from 1814, ultimately from classification of ships (1640s); third class in railway travel is from 1839. Third Reich (1930) is a partial translation of German drittes Reich (1923). Third party in law, insurance, etc., is from 1818.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

third in Medicine




Coming next after second, as in order, rank, or time.
Being the digit that is adjacent to and is on the outermost side of the second digit, as on a foot.
Related formsthird n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.