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EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

The adjective is derived from Early Middle English thwert, thwerte, thuart, thurt, thurte, thwart, thwarte, twart, twarte, twhart, twhert, twort, þuert, þwerrt, þwert, þwerte, ðwert (crosswise, transverse; counter, opposing; contrary, obstinate),[1] borrowed from Old Norse þvert (across, athwart), originally the neuter form of þverr (across, transverse),[2] from Proto-Germanic *þwerhaz (cross; adverse) (altered or influenced by Proto-Germanic *þweraną (to stir; to swirl; to turn)), from Proto-Germanic *þerh-, probably from Proto-Indo-European *terkʷ- (to spin; to turn).

The English adjective is cognate with Danish tvær (sullen, sulky), Gothic 𐌸𐍅𐌰𐌹𐍂𐍃 (þwaírs, angry), Middle Dutch dwers, dwars (modern Dutch dwars (crosswise, transverse; slantwise, askew; stubbornly disobedient)), Norwegian tvert, tvært, Old Frisian þweres, dwers (Saterland Frisian twars, West Frisian dwers, dwerz (across, to the other side of; beyond)), Middle Low German dwers, dwars (Low German dwars (contrary; cross-grained)), Old English þweorh (transverse; perverse; angry, cross), Old High German twer (Middle High German twer, quer, modern German quer (crosswise; cross)), Swedish tvär (across, transverse; of a curve: sharp; immediate, sudden; grumpy, stubborn).[2] It is related to queer.

The adverb is derived from Middle English thwert, ywerte (crosswise; across the grain); the Middle English Dictionary suggests the adverb was derived from the adjective,[3] while the Oxford English Dictionary notes that the adverb is attested earlier than the adjective.[2]

The verb is derived from Middle English thwerten, thwert, thwarten, þwerten (to lie across; to oppose, to thwart),[4] and further from the adverb[5] and perhaps also the adjective.[4]

Noun sense 1 (“a seat across a boat on which a rower may sit”) may be derived from the adverb or adjective, from the position of the seat across the length of the boat,[6] while noun sense 3 (“(rare) an act of thwarting”) is derived from the verb.[7] Compare Middle English thwert (in in thwert: crosswise), from the adjective.[8]

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

thwart (comparative more thwart, superlative most thwart)

  1. Placed or situated across something else; cross, oblique, transverse.
    • 1667, John Milton, “Book VII”, in Paradise Lost. A Poem Written in Ten Books, London: Printed [by Samuel Simmons], and are to be sold by Peter Parker [] [a]nd by Robert Boulter [] [a]nd Matthias Walker, [], OCLC 228722708; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: The Text Exactly Reproduced from the First Edition of 1667: [], London: Basil Montagu Pickering [], 1873, OCLC 230729554, lines 768–773:
      Which elſe to ſeveral Sphears thou muſt aſcribe, / Mov'd contrarie with thwart obliquities, / Or ſave the Sun his labour, and that ſwift / Nocturnal and Diurnal rhomb ſuppos'd, / Inviſible elſe above all Starrs, the Wheele / Of Day and Night; [...]
  2. (figuratively, dated) Of people: having a tendency to oppose; obstinate, perverse, stubborn.
    Synonyms: cross-grained, froward; see also Thesaurus:obstinate
  3. (figuratively, dated) Of situations or things: adverse, unfavourable, unlucky.
    Synonyms: unpropitious, untoward; see also Thesaurus:unlucky

Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

AdverbEdit

thwart (not comparable)

  1. (obsolete) Across the direction of travel or length of; athwart, crosswise, obliquely, transversely.

TranslationsEdit

PrepositionEdit

thwart

  1. (archaic or poetic) Across, athwart.

VerbEdit

thwart (third-person singular simple present thwarts, present participle thwarting, simple past and past participle thwarted)

  1. (transitive) To cause to fail; to frustrate, to prevent.
    Synonyms: balk, foil, spoil
    Our plans for a picnic were thwarted by the thunderstorm.
    The police thwarted the would-be assassin.
    • 1590, T[homas] L[odge], “Alindas Comfort to Perplexed Rosalynd”, in Rosalynde. Euphues Golden Legacie: [], London: Imprinted by Thomas Orwin for T. G[ubbin] and John Busbie, OCLC 35072982; republished [Glasgow: Printed for the Hunterian Club, 1876], OCLC 9437712, folio 13, verso, page 34:
      If thou grieueſt that beeing the daughter of a Prince, and enuie thwarteth thée with ſuch hard exigents, thinke that royaltie is a faire marke; that Crownes haue croſſes when mirth is in Cottages; that the fairer the Roſe is, the ſooner it is bitten with Catterpillers; [...]
    • 1662 November 9, Robert South, “[Sermon II] A Sermon Preached at the Cathedral-Church of St. Paul’s, November the 9th, 1662: Genesis i. 27. So God created Man in his own Image, in the Image of God created He him.”, in Twelve Sermons Preached upon Several Occasions, volume I, 5th edition, London: Printed for Jonah Bowyer, [], published 1722, OCLC 1037558139, page 60:
      The Underſtanding and Will never diſagreed; for the Propoſals of the one never thwarted the Inclinations of the other.
    • 1830, Walter Scott, “Auchindrane; or, The Ayrshire Tragedy”, in The Doom of Devorgoil, a Melo-drama; Auchindrane; or, The Ayrshire Tragedy, Edinburgh: Printed [by Ballantyne and Company] for Cadell and Company; London: Simpkin and Marshall, OCLC 742335644, Act III, scene i, page 309:
      Hear ye the serf I bred, begin to reckon / Upon his rights and pleasure! Who am I— / Thou abject, who am I, whose will thou thwartest?
    • 1918, W[illiam] B[abington] Maxwell, chapter XLIV, in The Mirror and the Lamp, Indianapolis, Ind.: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, OCLC 4293071, page 361:
      Not unnaturally, "Auntie" took this communication in bad part. Thus outraged, she showed herself to be a bold as well as a furious virago. Next day she found her way to their lodgings and tried to recover her ward by the hair of the head. Then, thwarted, the wretched creature went to the police for help; she was versed in the law, and had perhaps spared no pains to keep on good terms with the local constabulary.
    • 2004, Peter Bondanella, “Wise Guys: Hollywood Italian Gangsters”, in Hollywood Italians: Dagos, Palookas, Romeos, Wise Guys, and Sopranos, New York, N.Y.: Continuum International Publishing Group, →ISBN, pages 231–232:
      The film ends with the colorful deaths of Nico's enemies after he thwarts their attempts to assassinate a U.S. Senator investigating ties between drug dealers and the CIA.
    • 2006, Edwin Black, “Power Struggle”, in Internal Combustion: How Corporations and Governments Addicted the World to Oil and Derailed the Alternatives, New York, N.Y.: St. Martin’s Press, →ISBN, OL 4103950W:
      More than a mere source of Promethean sustenance to thwart the cold and cook one's meat, wood was quite simply mankind's first industrial and manufacturing fuel.
    • 2011 December 10, David Ornstein, “Arsenal 1 – 0 Everton”, in BBC Sport[1], archived from the original on 13 December 2011:
      Everton were now firmly on the back foot and it required some sharp work from Johnny Heitinga and Phil Jagielka to thwart [Theo] Walcott and Thomas Vermaelen.
  2. (transitive, obsolete) To place (something) across (another thing); to position crosswise.
  3. (transitive, also figuratively, obsolete) To hinder or obstruct by placing (something) in the way of; to block, to impede, to oppose.
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:hinder
  4. (transitive, intransitive, obsolete) To move (something) across or counter to; to cross.
    An arrow thwarts the air.
    • 1667, John Milton, “Book IV”, in Paradise Lost. A Poem Written in Ten Books, London: Printed [by Samuel Simmons], and are to be sold by Peter Parker [] [a]nd by Robert Boulter [] [a]nd Matthias Walker, [], OCLC 228722708; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: The Text Exactly Reproduced from the First Edition of 1667: [], London: Basil Montagu Pickering [], 1873, OCLC 230729554, lines 555–557:
      Thither came Uriel, gliding through the Eeven / On a Sun beam, ſwift as a ſhooting Starr / In Autumn thwarts the night, [...]

ConjugationEdit

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

NounEdit

thwart (plural thwarts)

  1. (nautical) A seat across a boat on which a rower may sit.
    Synonyms: thaught, thawt, thoft (Britain, dialectal)
    The fisherman sat on the aft thwart to row.
  2. (nautical) A brace, perpendicular to the keel, that helps maintain the beam (breadth) of a marine vessel against external water pressure and that may serve to support the rail.
    A well-made dugout canoe rarely needs a thwart.
  3. (rare) An act of thwarting; something which thwarts; a hindrance, an obstacle.

TranslationsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ thwert, adj.” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 5 August 2019.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 thwart, adv., prep., and adj.”, in OED Online  , Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1912; “thwart, prep. and adv.” in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press.
  3. ^ thwert, adv.” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 5 August 2019.
  4. 4.0 4.1 thwerten, v.” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 5 August 2018.
  5. ^ thwart, v.”, in OED Online  , Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1912; “thwart, v.” in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press.
  6. ^ thwart, n.2”, in OED Online  , Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1912; “thwart, n.” in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press.
  7. ^ thwart, n.1”, in OED Online  , Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1912.
  8. ^ thwert, n.” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 5 August 2019.

Further readingEdit