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[thik] /θɪk/
adjective, thicker, thickest.
having relatively great extent from one surface or side to the opposite; not thin:
a thick slice.
measured, as specified, between opposite surfaces, from top to bottom, or in a direction perpendicular to that of the length and breadth; (of a solid having three general dimensions) measured across its smallest dimension:
a board one inch thick.
composed of or containing objects, particles, etc., close together; dense:
a thick fog; a thick forest.
filled, covered, or abounding (usually followed by with):
tables thick with dust.
husky or hoarse; not distinctly articulated:
The patient's speech is still quite thick.
markedly so (as specified):
a thick German accent.
deep or profound:
thick darkness.
(of a liquid) heavy or viscous:
a thick syrup.
Informal. close in friendship; intimate.
mentally slow; stupid; dull.
disagreeably excessive or exaggerated:
They thought it a bit thick when he called himself a genius.
adverb, thicker, thickest.
in a thick manner.
close together; closely packed:
The roses grew thick along the path.
in a manner to produce something thick:
Slice the cheese thick.
the thickest, densest, or most crowded part:
in the thick of the fight.
lay it on thick, Informal. to praise excessively; flatter:
He's laying it on thick because he wants you to do him a favor.
through thick and thin, under favorable and unfavorable conditions; steadfastly:
We have been friends for 20 years, through thick and thin.
Origin of thick
before 900; (adj. and adv.) Middle English thikke, Old English thicce; cognate with Dutch dik, German dick; akin to Old Norse thykkr (noun) Middle English, derivative of the adj.
Related forms
thickish, adjective
thickly, adverb
overthick, adjective
overthickly, adverb
overthickness, noun
superthick, adjective
unthick, adjective
unthickly, adverb
unthickness, noun
6. strong, pronounced, decided. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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British Dictionary definitions for through thick and thin


of relatively great extent from one surface to the other; fat, broad, or deep: a thick slice of bread
  1. (postpositive) of specific fatness: ten centimetres thick
  2. (in combination): a six-inch-thick wall
having a relatively dense consistency; not transparent: thick soup
abundantly covered or filled: a piano thick with dust
impenetrable; dense: a thick fog
stupid, slow, or insensitive: a thick person
throaty or badly articulated: a voice thick with emotion
(of accents, etc) pronounced
(informal) very friendly (esp in the phrase thick as thieves)
(Brit) a bit thick, unfair or excessive
(informal) a thick ear, a blow on the ear delivered as punishment, in anger, etc
in order to produce something thick: to slice bread thick
profusely; in quick succession (esp in the phrase thick and fast)
(informal) lay it on thick
  1. to exaggerate a story, statement, etc
  2. to flatter excessively
a thick piece or part
the thick, the busiest or most intense part
through thick and thin, in good times and bad
Derived Forms
thickish, adjective
thickly, adverb
Word Origin
Old English thicce; related to Old Saxon, Old High German thikki, Old Norse thykkr
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 through thick and thin



Old English þicce "not thin, dense," from Proto-Germanic *theku-, *thekwia- (cf. Old Saxon thikki, Old High German dicchi, German dick, Old Norse þykkr, Old Frisian thikke), from PIE *tegu- "thick" (cf. Gaelic tiugh).

Secondary Old English sense of "close together" is preserved in thickset and proverbial phrase thick as thieves (1833). Meaning "stupid" is first recorded 1590s. Phrase thick and thin is in Chaucer (late 14c.); thick-skinned is attested from 1540s; in figurative sense from c.1600. To be in the thick of some action, etc., "to be at the most intense moment" is from 1680s, from a Middle English noun sense.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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through thick and thin in Medicine

thick (thĭk)
adj. thick·er, thick·est

  1. Relatively great in extent from one surface to the opposite, usually in the smallest solid dimension; not thin.

  2. Measuring a specified number of units in this dimension.

  3. Heavy in form, build, or stature; thickset.

  4. Having component parts in a close, crowded state or arrangement; dense.

  5. Having or suggesting a heavy or viscous consistency.

  6. Having a great number; abounding.

  7. Impenetrable by the eyes.

  8. Not easy to hear or understand; indistinctly articulated.

  9. Noticeably affecting sound; conspicuous.

  10. Producing indistinctly articulated sounds.

  1. In a close, compact state or arrangement; densely.

  2. In a thick manner; deeply or heavily.

The most active or intense part.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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through thick and thin in Culture

through thick and thin definition

To stay with someone or something “through thick and thin” is to persevere through good times as well as bad: “She stood beside her friend through thick and thin.”

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for through thick and thin

there's no way

adverb phrase

Under no conceivable circumstances: There's no way I'll ever see it your way (1975+)

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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Idioms and Phrases with through thick and thin

through thick and thin

Despite all obstacles or adversities, as in She promised to stand by him through thick and thin. This term alludes to penetrating a forest with both thick and sparse undergrowth. Today it is nearly always used with the idea of supporting something or someone in all circumstances, as in the example. [ Late 1300s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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