the-[t̸hə; before vowels t̸hē, t̸hi]
- The is defined as an article and is used before a noun to specify, or put emphasis on, that noun.
An example of "the" is saying that a particular bird is blue.
the- definition by Webster's New World
- that (one) being spoken of or already mentioned: the story ended that (one) which is present, close, nearby, etc., as distinguished from all others viewed as remote: the day just started, the heat is oppressive that (one) designated or identified, as by a title: the President (of the U.S.), the Mississippi (River) that (one) considered outstanding, most fashionable, etc.: usually italicized in print: that's the restaurant in town that (one) belonging to a person previously mentioned or understood: take me by the hand, rub into the face one specified period of time, esp. a decade: the Dark Ages, the seventiesInformal that (one) who has a specific family relationship to one: the wife, the kid sister
- an attributive adjective: the front door a relative clause: the man who answered a prepositional phrase: the hit of the week an infinitive phrase: the right to strike a participle: follow the directions given
- one taken as the representative of the entire genus or type: learn to use the typewriter, the cow is a domestic animal an adjective used as a noun: the good, the beautiful, the true
Origin: Middle English indeclinable article ; from Old English se (nom. masculine article) with th- ; from other case and amp; gender forms (thone, thæs, thære, thæm, thy): for Indo-European base see that; the meaning is controlled by the basic notion “previously recognized, noticed, or encountered” in distinction to a, an
- that much; to that extent: the better to see you with
- by how much . . . by that much; to what extent . . . to that extent: used in a correlative construction expressing comparison: the sooner the better
the- definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- a. Used before singular or plural nouns and noun phrases that denote particular, specified persons or things: the baby; the dress I wore.b. Used before a noun, and generally stressed, to emphasize one of a group or type as the most outstanding or prominent: considered Lake Shore Drive to be the neighborhood to live in these days.c. Used to indicate uniqueness: the Prince of Wales; the moon.d. Used before nouns that designate natural phenomena or points of the compass: the weather; a wind from the south.e. Used as the equivalent of a possessive adjective before names of some parts of the body: grab him by the neck; an infection of the hand.f. Used before a noun specifying a field of endeavor: the law; the film industry; the stage.g. Used before a proper name, as of a monument or ship: the Alamo; the Titanic.h. Used before the plural form of a numeral denoting a specific decade of a century or of a life span: rural life in the Thirties.
- Used before a singular noun indicating that the noun is generic: The wolf is an endangered species.
- a. Used before an adjective extending it to signify a class and giving it the function of a noun: the rich; the dead; the homeless.b. Used before an absolute adjective: the best we can offer.
- Used before a present participle, signifying the action in the abstract: the weaving of rugs.
- Used before a noun with the force of per: cherries at $1.50 the box.
Origin: Middle English, from Old English the, alteration (influenced by , th-, oblique case stem of demonstrative pron.) of se, masculine demonstrative pron.; see so- in Indo-European roots.
- Because of that. Used before a comparative: thinks the worse of you after this mistake.
- To that extent; by that much: the sooner the better.
- Beyond any other: enjoyed reading the most.
Origin: Middle English, from Old English thȳ, thē, instrumental of thǽt, neuter demonstrative pron.; see to- in Indo-European roots.
Variant of theo-
Origin: ; from Classical Greek theos, god ; from uncertain or unknown; perhaps Indo-European an unverified form dhewes-, to storm, breathe from source Classical Latin furere, to rage