Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

thief

play
noun \ˈthēf\

Simple Definition of thief

  • : a person who steals something

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of thief

plural

thieves

play \ˈthēvz\
  1. :  one that steals especially stealthily or secretly; also :  one who commits theft or larceny

Examples of thief in a sentence

  1. A thief took my purse.

  2. <a thief has been stealing wallets and valuables from the lockers at the gym>



Origin and Etymology of thief

Middle English theef, from Old English thēof; akin to Old High German diob thief


First Known Use: before 12th century

Rhymes with thief



THIEF Defined for Kids

thief

play
noun \ˈthēf\

Definition of thief for Students

plural

thieves

\ˈthēvz\
  1. :  a person who steals :  robber




Law Dictionary

thief

noun

Legal Definition of thief

plural

thieves

  1. :  one who commits theft



Origin and Etymology of thief

Old English thēof



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up thief? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a jerking and twitching of the body

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

two-chairs-on-a-pier-by-the-ocean-in-summer

Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?

estival hiemal brumal vernal
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ