• synonyms


[trahy-ath-luh n]
  1. an athletic contest comprising three consecutive events, usually swimming, bicycling, and distance running.
  2. a women's track-and-field competition comprising the 100-meter dash, high jump, and shot put.
  3. British. a competition comprising fly-casting, horseback-riding, and trapshooting events.
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Origin of triathlon

First recorded in 1970–75; tri- + (dec)athlon
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for triathlon


  1. an athletic contest in which each athlete competes in three different events: swimming, cycling, and running
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Derived Formstriathlete, noun

Word Origin

C20: from tri- + Greek athlon contest
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 triathlon


1973, from tri- "three" + Greek athlon "contest;" formed on model of decathlon, etc.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper