\ ˈthrē How to pronounce three (audio) \

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 Devin Booker hit two threes in a span of 16.9 seconds with the second one giving Phoenix Suns the lead with 36 seconds left in their 98-94 comeback win. Duane Rankin, azcentral, "Phoenix Suns look to have individual workouts May 16 at the earliest amid COVID-19," 3 May 2020 For the most part, people sat in twos or threes with ample grassy space between them. Anna Bauman,, "SF mayor threatens to close Dolores Park, people practice social distancing on Monday," 4 May 2020 Sharpe’s 214 threes are also the ninth most in school history. James Weber,, "NKU senior wins all-district award as Norse release 'One Shining Moment video'; TMU ranked," 26 Mar. 2020 Giving up good looks Texas Tech knocked down 13 threes and shot 60.4% from the field. Grant Mcgalliard, Dallas News, "Horned Frogs blown out in ugly loss at Texas Tech," 10 Feb. 2020 Siakam hit five threes by himself in the first half. Duane Rankin, azcentral, "Pascal Siakam, Toronto Raptors rout Phoenix Suns in first game after NBA all-star break," 21 Feb. 2020 On Tuesday, the Nittany Lions shooting guard hit four threes in the first half but could barely breathe in the second. Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press, "How Rocket Watts ignited Michigan State basketball: 'You got any balls?'," 6 Mar. 2020 Following two free throws by Tinkle, Pritchard and Will Richardson hit consecutive threes to increase the Oregon lead to 51-29. oregonlive, "No. 14 Oregon ends three-game Civil War losing streak, routs Oregon State 69-54: Game at a glance," 27 Feb. 2020 Below is a recap of the game: FINAL: Texas A&M 78, Auburn 75 -- Auburn misses its last-second three and loses its first home game 78-75. Giana Han, al, "Rewind: Texas A&M ruins Auburn’s undefeated home record," 4 Mar. 2020

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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Time Traveler for three

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for three

Cite this Entry

“Three.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for three


How to pronounce three (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of three

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


\ ˈthrē How to pronounce three (audio) \

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

More from Merriam-Webster on three

Nglish: Translation of three for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of three for Arabic Speakers

Comments on three

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