\ ˈthrē \

Definition of three

1 : a number that is one more than 2 — see Table of Numbers
2 : the third in a set or series the three of hearts
3a : something having three units or members

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Other Words from three

three adjective
three pronoun, plural in construction

Examples of three in a Sentence

“What time is it?” “It's three.” I leave each day at three.

Recent Examples on the Web

Milwaukee’s 6-foot-11 star Giannis Antetokounmpo, for example, is the front-runner to win the league’s MVP award despite shooting 17% on his meager 2.4 threes per game. Ben Cohen, WSJ, "The Star With the Worst Shooting Season in NBA History," 14 Jan. 2019 The Celtics were just 29-for-74 from the field (39.2%), including 6-for-22 on threes (27.3%). Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY, "LeBron James, Cavaliers destroy Celtics in Game 3 of Eastern Conference finals," 19 May 2018 After producing the most three-pointers in NBA history off the bench and setting a new franchise-record for threes in a regular season (227), Ellington, 30, is bound to get a healthy raise this summer. Manny Navarro, miamiherald, "Ellington would like another shot with Heat next season. But is a restructuring imminent? | Miami Herald," 25 Apr. 2018 His seven threes were the most since Christavious Gill drained eight versus Northwestern State on March 5, 2016 and the 31 points tied Erik Thomas' mark in last season's opening victory versus LaGrange College (Nov. 11)., "UNO wins in overtime at McNeese State, improves to 4-0 in league play," 6 Jan. 2018 Marte hit two big threes to start the game as Osceola built a 21-9 lead in the first quarter., "Osceola at Oak Ridge boys basketball rematch is on," 28 Feb. 2018 The 220-yard 17th hole is one of the best par threes in Michigan — bar none. Carlos Monarrez, Detroit Free Press, "Top 10 metro Detroit public golf courses for 2018," 6 July 2018 After all, veteran forward Luke Babbitt, a three-point specialist with much of the same skills as Robinson, and shooting guard Wayne Ellington, who set a franchise record for threes last season, are both free agents. Manny Navarro, miamiherald, "Former Michigan star opening eyes on Heat summer league team with 3-point touch, IQ," 4 July 2018 Good things come in threes, and K-pop group BTS proves just that with the third edition of its Love Yourself albums. Devon Abelman, Allure, "BTS Shows Off Amazing Hairstyles and Dye Jobs in "Idol" Music Video," 24 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'three.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of three

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for three

Middle English, from three, adjective, from Old English thrīe (masculine), thrēo (feminine & neuter); akin to Old High German drī three, Latin tres, Greek treis

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Statistics for three

Last Updated

28 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for three

The first known use of three was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for three



English Language Learners Definition of three

: the number 3
: the third in a set or series
: three o'clock


\ ˈthrē \

Kids Definition of three

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: being one more than two



Kids Definition of three (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : one more than two : 3
2 : the third in a set or series

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More from Merriam-Webster on three

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with three

Spanish Central: Translation of three

Nglish: Translation of three for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of three for Arabic Speakers

Comments on three

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