[ woo s-tid, wur-stid ]
/ ˈwʊs tɪd, ˈwɜr stɪd /


firmly twisted yarn or thread spun from combed, stapled wool fibers of the same length, for weaving, knitting, etc.Compare woolen.
wool cloth woven from such yarns, having a hard, smooth surface and no nap.


consisting or made of worsted.

Origin of worsted

1250–1300; Middle English worsted(e), special use of Worstede Worstead (Old English Wurthestede), name of parish in Norfolk, England, where the cloth was made

Related forms

half-worst·ed, adjective

Definition for worsted (2 of 2)

Origin of worst

before 900; Middle English worste (adj., adv., and noun), Old English wur(re)sta, wyr(re)st, wer(re)sta (adj. and adv.); cognate with Old Norse verstr; see worse, -est1

Can be confused

worst wurst
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for worsted

British Dictionary definitions for worsted (1 of 2)


/ (ˈwʊstɪd) /


a closely twisted yarn or thread made from combed long-staple wool
a fabric made from this, with a hard smooth close-textured surface and no nap
(modifier) made of this yarn or fabrica worsted suit

Word Origin for worsted

C13: named after Worstead, a district in Norfolk

British Dictionary definitions for worsted (2 of 2)

Word Origin for worst

Old English wierrest; related to Old Frisian wersta, Old Saxon, Old High German wirsisto, Old Norse verstr
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

Idioms and Phrases with worsted


see at worst; get (have) the worst of it; if worst comes to worst; in the worst way. Also see under worse.

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