[thou-zuh nd]

noun, plural thou·sands, (as after a numeral) thou·sand.

a cardinal number, 10 times 100.
a symbol for this number, as 1000 or M.
thousands. the numbers between 1000 and 999,999, as in referring to an amount of money: Property damage was in the thousands.
a great number or amount.
Also thousand's place.
  1. (in a mixed number) the position of the fourth digit to the left of the decimal point.
  2. (in a whole number) the position of the fourth digit from the right.


amounting to 1000 in number.

Origin of thousand

before 900; Middle English; Old English thūsend; cognate with Dutch duizend, Old High German dūsunt, Old Norse thūsund, Gothic thūsindi Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for thousand

Contemporary Examples of thousand

Historical Examples of thousand

  • Did he say anything about what he had done with this thousand dollars or more?

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • He thinks you're dying to hear how he made the first thousand of himself.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • The clock struck twelve, and it seemed as if it struck a thousand.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • A thousand pounds is a heavy venture for one so straitened as I am.

  • These trees are reputed to have flourished for much more than a thousand years.

    The Grand Old Man

    Richard B. Cook

British Dictionary definitions for thousand



the cardinal number that is the product of 10 and 100See also number (def. 1)
a numeral, 1000, 10³, M, etc, representing this number
(often plural) a very large but unspecified number, amount, or quantitythey are thousands of miles away
(plural) the numbers 2000–9999the price of the picture was in the thousands
the amount or quantity that is one hundred times greater than ten
something represented by, representing, or consisting of 1000 units
maths the position containing a digit representing that number followed by three zerosin 4760, 4 is in the thousand's place


  1. amounting to a thousanda thousand ships
  2. (as pronoun)a thousand is hardly enough
amounting to 1000 times a particular scientific unit
Related formsRelated prefix: kilo-Related adjective: millenary

Word Origin for thousand

Old English thūsend; related to Old Saxon thūsind, Old High German thūsunt, Old Norse thūsund
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 thousand

Old English þusend, from Proto-Germanic *thusundi (cf. Old Frisian thusend, Dutch duizend, Old High German dusunt, German tausend, Old Norse þusund, Gothic þusundi).

Related to words in Balto-Slavic (cf. Lithuanian tukstantis, Old Church Slavonic tysashta, Polish tysiąc, Czech tisic), and probably ultimately a compound with indefinite meaning "several hundred" or "a great multitude" (with first element perhaps related to Sanskrit tawas "strong, force").

Used to translate Greek khilias, Latin mille, hence the refinement into the precise modern meaning. There was no general Indo-European word for "thousand." Slang shortening thou first recorded 1867. Thousand island dressing (1916) is presumably named for the region of New York on the St. Lawrence River.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with thousand


see bat a thousand; by the dozen (thousand); one in a million (thousand); picture is worth a thousand words.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.