pronoun[second person singular]
- However, a scripture I had learned as a child took on a whole new meaning: ‘What is man that thou art mindful of him?’
- In Solomon's Song the interrogators ask the bride, ‘What is thy beloved more than another beloved, O thou fairest among women?’
- But curb thou the high spirit in thy breast, for gentle ways are best, and keep aloof from sharp contentions.
Old English thu, of Germanic origin; related to German du, from an Indo-European root shared by Latin tu.
In modern English, the personal pronoun you (together with the possessives your and yours) covers a number of uses: it is both singular and plural, both objective and subjective, and both formal and familiar. This has not always been the case. In Old English and Middle English, some of these different functions of you were supplied by different words. Thus, thou was at one time the singular subjective case ( thou art a beast), while thee was the singular objective case ( he cares not for thee). In addition, the form thy (modern equivalent your) was the singular possessive determiner, and thine (modern equivalent yours) the singular possessive pronoun, both corresponding to thee. The forms you and ye, on the other hand, were at one time reserved for plural uses. By the 19th century, these forms were universal in standard English for both singular and plural, polite and familiar. In present day use, thou, thee, thy, and thine survive in certain religious groups and in some traditional British dialects, but otherwise are found only in archaic contexts.
noun (plural same or thous)informal
- He will give us a hundred thou just for bringing her in alive!
- A couple hundred thou would make a lot of my problems easier to handle.
- It was close to ten o'clock when I reached the house I wanted: mid-range for this neighborhood, less than three hundred thou, but they'd added a pool since.
mid 19th century: abbreviation.