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[thach] /θætʃ/
Also, thatching. a material, as straw, rushes, leaves, or the like, used to cover roofs, grain stacks, etc.
a covering of such a material.
the leaves of various palms that are used for thatching.
something resembling thatch on a roof, especially thick hair covering the head:
a thatch of unruly red hair.
Horticulture. a tightly bound layer of dead grass, including leaves, stems, and roots, that builds up on the soil surface at the base of the living grass of a lawn.
verb (used with object)
to cover with or as if with thatch.
Horticulture. to remove thatch from (a lawn); dethatch.
Origin of thatch
before 900; (v.) Middle English thacchen, variant (with a from thak > dial. thack) of thecchen, Old English theccan to cover, hide; cognate with Dutch dekken (see deck), German decken, Old Norse thekja; (noun) Middle English thacche, variant (with ch from the v.) of thak
Related forms
thatchless, adjective
thatchy, adjective
rethatch, verb (used with object)


[thach] /θætʃ/
Edward, Teach, Edward. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for thatch
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The sparks from the chimney must have blown straight up to the thatch; that's how it was.

  • He's taken the pike with him that lay in the thatch over our bed this year and more.

    The Northern Iron George A. Birmingham
  • Henry has often been on the thatch of the barn and never got hurt.

    The Fairchild Family Mary Martha Sherwood
  • The thatch was soaked until the water ran through the ceilings.

    The Watchers of the Plains Ridgewell Cullum
  • She could see Allans tall figure, his clear blue eyes and his thatch of unruly blond hair.

    Gypsies of the Air Bess Moyer
  • Icicles hang from the eaves of the rick, and its thatch is covered with snow.

    The Toilers of the Field Richard Jefferies
  • For ceiling long, thin wattle stems converging upwards, and outside a thatch of dried grass.

    The Rhodesian Gertrude Page
  • A dim light was burning in a small apartment, which had been roofed with thatch.

    On the Irrawaddy G. A. Henty
British Dictionary definitions for thatch


  1. Also called thatching. a roofing material that consists of straw, reed, etc
  2. a roof made of such a material
anything resembling this, such as the hair of the head
Also called thatch palm. any of various palms with leaves suitable for thatching
to cover (a roof) with thatch
Derived Forms
thatcher, noun
thatchless, adjective
thatchy, adjective
Word Origin
Old English theccan to cover; related to thæc roof, Old Saxon thekkian to thatch, Old High German decchen, Old Norse thekja
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for thatch

Old English þeccan "to cover," related to þæc "roof, thatching material," from Proto-Germanic *thakan (cf. Old Saxon thekkian, Old Norse þekja, Old Frisian thekka, Middle Dutch decken, Old High German decchen, German decken "to cover"), from PIE *(s)tog-/*(s)teg- "cover" (see stegosaurus).


Old English þæc "roof, thatch," from the source of thatch (v.). Cf. Old Norse þak, Old Frisian thek, Middle Dutch dak "roof," Old High German dah, German Dach "roof."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for thatch

thank you ma'am

noun phrase

A bump or hole in the road

Related Terms

wham-bam thank you ma'am

[1849+; because riders bounce up and down as if they were bowing thanks]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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