Definition of third-hand in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌTHərdˈhand/
(also thirdhand)


1(Of goods) having had two previous owners: a thirdhand dinner suit
More example sentences
  • Mine was a dreadful affair with third-hand badges badly sewn on and once I was summoned to see Miss Gillies about it.
  • It might be third-hand with 135,000 miles on the clock, but it's still a nice car.
  • Brad looked around his extremely messy apartment, filled with third-hand furniture, pizza boxes and scattered personal items.
2(Of information) acquired from or via several intermediate sources and consequently not authoritative or reliable: the accounts are third-hand, told years after the event
More example sentences
  • It is not an easy task; we often hear second or third-hand information.
  • We listen to third-hand hearsay about the woman in the flat below or some friend of a friend currently manning the hospital barricades
  • Meanwhile they continue to publish more third-hand hearsay from the British insurance industry.


From or via several intermediate sources: I heard about the case thirdhand
More example sentences
  • This comes to me third-hand, and its veracity is possibly a bit suspect.
  • Two days were set aside to hear from journalists who had not been present on the day but had reported the story third-hand.
  • Most got their ‘evidence’ about Africans and non-Europeans second and third-hand from the actual conquerors and enslavers.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: third-hand

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