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rule of three the method of finding the fourth term of a mathematical proportion when three terms are given, the product of the first and fourth terms being equal to the product of the second and third.
three R's reading, writing, and arithmetic, considered as the fundamentals of education.
three-base hit a hit in baseball that allows the batter to reach third base safely; triple.
three-card monte a gambling game in which three cards are dealt face down and shuffled about, and spectators then bet on the location of a particular card.
three-decker something with three levels or layers, esp. a sandwich with three slices of bread; triple-decker. [2 definitions]
three-digit number a whole number containing three digits, such as 365.
three-dimensional having or appearing in three dimensions; having depth as well as height and width. [2 definitions]
three-four time see "three-quarter time."
three-mile limit the outer limit, under international law, of a country's jurisdiction extending from its coast.
three-phase of, designating, or pertaining to an electrical circuit, system, or device powered by three alternating electromotive forces that differ in phase by one-third of a cycle, or 120 electrical degrees.
three-piece made of or having three parts. [2 definitions]
three-ply having three layers, strands, or the like bonded or woven together.
three-point landing a perfect aircraft landing in which the two main wheels and the tail or nose wheel touch down simultaneously.
three-point play in basketball, a play in which a player is fouled while making a two-point basket and then scores another point on the subsequent free throw.
three-quarter time a musical meter having three quarter notes or their equivalent in each measure; three-four time.
three-ring circus a circus having simultaneous performances in three separate rings. [2 definitions]
three-way designed to operate in three ways, esp. as a light bulb or electrical switch that operates on three different wattages.
three-wheeler a vehicle with three wheels, such as a tricycle or some early or experimental cars.