thew was our Word of the Day on 01/20/2016. Hear the podcast!
Examples of thew in a sentence
a prizefighter of unparalleled thew in the boxing world
Did You Know?
Thew has had a long, difficult past during which it discovered its strengths and weaknesses. In Middle English it carried a number of meanings, referring to a custom, habit, personal quality, or virtue. The word began to tire in the 16th century but was soon revitalized with a new meaning: it began to be used specifically for the quality of physical strength and later for the muscles demonstrating that quality. In time, the word buddied up with "sinew" in both literal and figurative turns of phrase, as in "the thews and sinews of my body ached" and "their love affair was the thew and sinew of the story."
Origin and Etymology of thew
Middle English, personal quality, virtue, from Old English thēaw; akin to Old High German thau custom
First Known Use: 15th century
Seen and Heard
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