Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A purebred or pedigreed animal, especially a horse.
  • n. Any of a breed of horses, bred chiefly for racing, originating from a cross between Arabian stallions and English mares.
  • n. A well-bred person.
  • adj. Bred of pure stock; purebred.
  • adj. Relating or belonging to horses of the Thoroughbred.
  • adj. Thoroughly trained or educated; well bred.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. bred from pure stock
  • adj. well-bred and properly educated
  • n. A particular breed of horse (this does not refer to any purebred horse)
  • n. A well-bred person.
  • n. A person of uncommon strength or endurance.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Bred from the best blood through a long line; pure-blooded; -- said of stock, as horses. Hence, having the characteristics of such breeding; mettlesome; courageous; of elegant form, or the like.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Of pure or unmixed breed, stock, or race; bred from a sire and dam of the purest or best blood. See II.
  • Hence Having the qualities characteristic of pure breeding; high-spirited; mettlesome; elegant or graceful in form or bearing: sometimes applied colloquially to persons.
  • Thoroughgoing; thorough.
  • n. An animal, especially a horse, of pure blood, stock, or race; strictly, and as noting horses, a race-horse all of whose ancestors for a given number of generations (seven in England, five in America) are recorded in the stud-book.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a well-bred person
  • n. a racehorse belonging to a breed that originated from a cross between Arabian stallions and English mares
  • n. a pedigreed animal of unmixed lineage; used especially of horses
  • adj. having a list of ancestors as proof of being a purebred animal

Etymologies

thorough +‎ bred (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Neither my Mamma or my Aunt were big women; they were rather what I call the thoroughbred type, about the Venus height and slim, with splendid bottoms which I know must have been cultivated by the most careful corsetage from earliest girlhood, so being a well grown boy, the things just suited me.

    Forbidden Fruit Luscious and exciting story and More forbidden fruit or Master Percy's progress in and beyond the domestic circle

  • And, in fact, having owned several thoroughbreds now, one of the things that you learn when you own a thoroughbred is that the more you pull back, the faster they go.

    NPR's Julie Rovner Reviews 'Secretariat'

  • That said, it certainly prompted me to go back and start spending some time online to, you know, go to YouTube and look for their - look for the real race footage, because it was just an absolutely amazing time for anybody who was interested in thoroughbred racing.

    NPR's Julie Rovner Reviews 'Secretariat'

  • Most of the "new men" in thoroughbred racing "lived in the city of New York," Ms. Wall writes, and they threw piles of money into tracks and meets in Saratoga, N.Y., and elsewhere in the Northeast — where they also built lavish horse farms.

    Behind the Bluegrass

  • The ease and polish of the "thoroughbred" -- and "thoroughbred" is a term that should replace the played-out "gentleman" -- were convincingly shown.

    Ainslee's, Vol. 15, No. 6, July 1905

  • But the words are also used in the sense of breeding as used in the word thoroughbred with reference to horses or pedigreed with reference to dogs.

    The foundational bull ranches

  • Therefore, it is said, "The man who emulates a paragon will become a paragon himself," and "The horse who emulates a thoroughbred is a thoroughbred as well."

    Lives of the Nuns

  • It will be noticed that the Englishman must have soundness in wind, limb, and feet, showing that their thoroughbred is the thorn in that particular.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 611, September 17, 1887

  • Any thoroughbred, that is sired right and out of a good mare and trained by

    Triumph of the Egg, and Other Stories

  • He is what Jack call thoroughbred, and have the manners very fine.

    The Californians

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Comments

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  • Thoroughbred symbolises everything weird about the horse world. Why should three horses imported from the Middle east define the English horse. The General Stud Book, supposedly written to record the Thoroughbred Pedigree was actually written to stop upper class gamblers cheating. The firsat editin doesn't even mention thoroughbred.
    Today thoroughbreds are affected by major genetic problems and their legs are prone to shattering when running fast on smooth ground.

    January 3, 2009