Definition of third-degree in English:

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Pronunciation: /θəːdəˈɡriː/


1Denoting burns of the most severe kind, affecting tissue below the skin.
Example sentences
  • Those slightly farther from the center of the explosion did not die immediately, but suffered from severe third-degree burns all over their bodies, in particular to any areas that were exposed directly to the heat.
  • Some second-degree burns can heal with time, but deep ones and third-degree burns require skin grafts.
  • A third-degree burn results in the destruction of skin, and may extend into the superficial fascia, muscle and bone.
2North American Law Denoting the least serious category of a crime, especially murder.
Example sentences
  • Saunders pleaded guilty to third-degree murder and was sentenced in July to 20 to 40 years in prison.
  • Hughes pleaded guilty to third-degree murder, conspiracy and a gun charge and got 17 to 30 years.
  • The men were arrested Saturday for third-degree intellectual property counterfeiting.


(the third degree)
Long and harsh questioning, especially by police, to obtain information or a confession.
Example sentences
  • When I got home from school that afternoon I got the third degree from my father about how I had ruined his reputation as a minister and how I had ruined my own life.
  • She drags Tom inside with her so she can give him the third degree about this boy he's found for Laura.
  • I don't know why I'm giving you the third degree.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: third-degree

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