O.E. þræd "fine cord, especially when twisted" (related to þrawan "to twist"), from P.Gmc. *thrædus (cf. M.Du. draet, Du. draad, O.H.G. drat, Ger. Draht, O.N. þraðr), from suffixed form of base *thræ- "twist" (see throw). Meaning "spiral
ridge of a screw" is from 1670s. The verb meaning "to put thread through a needle" is recorded from mid-14c.; in reference to film cameras from 1913. The dancing move called thread the needle is attested from 1844. Threads, slang for "clothes" is 1926, Amer.Eng. Threadbare is recorded from mid-14c., from the notion of "having the nap worn off," leaving bare the threads.