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

  • n. A ship having three decks, especially one of a class of sail-powered warships with guns on three decks.
  • n. Something with three levels or layers, as:
  • n. A three-story apartment building.
  • n. A sandwich having three slices of bread.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A sailing warship that had guns on each of three decks
  • n. A sandwich made from three slices of bread; a triple-decker

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A vessel of war carrying guns on three decks.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A vessel of war carrying guns on three decks; formerly, a line-of-battle ship, such ships being of that description in the sailing navy and the earlier naval classification after the introduction of steam.
  • Having three decks: as, a three-decker ship; hence, having three stories, tiers, or levels, as a piece of furniture or an old-fashioned pulpit.

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

  • n. a warship carrying guns on three decks
  • n. made with three slices of usually toasted bread
  • n. any ship having three decks


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Later that afternoon I turned ontoPearl Streetand noticed a woman smoking on the first floor of a three-decker tenement.


  • Annie had lived with her Polish grandmother in another dingy three-decker on the next corner.

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  • The huge three-decker Sky Queen, a completely equipped flying laboratory, had been Tom's first major invention.

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  • Would you like arsenic sauce with your three-decker sauerkraut and toadstool sandwich?

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  • But he did not seem to notice, and instead launched into an account of how he had that morning read and reviewed four three-decker novels without cutting a single page, delivered his copy, and sold all four in pristine condition in Fleet Street in time for lunch.

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  • The lad had volunteered — along with two of his mates from the HMS Excellent, Second Lieutenant Hodgson and First Mate Hornby — but the Excellent was a damned three-decker that was old before Noah had fuzz around his dongle.

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  • French three-decker of the old type, moored higher up, serves as an hospital.

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  • It's hard to imagine that any contemporary novelist could have appropriated with such skill and force the irresistible narrative drive of the Victorian three-decker, or that readers who hunger for story won't devour this like grateful wolves.

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  • And the market, especially towards the end of the century, was for what are known as three-decker novels.

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  • Maurice Tinch wasn't at home when I knocked on the door of the three-decker in Dorchester, a neighborhood that functioned pretty well as a mixing pot -- if not a melting pot -- of Irish -, Greek -, and African-Americans.

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  • A sail warship carrying guns on three fully armed decks. Usually additional guns were carried on the upper works (forecastle and quarterdeck), but this was not a continuous battery, so these did not count. Three-deckers were usually ships of the line, classed as first-rate or second-rate.

    OR: You can go with a sandwich made of three slices of usually toasted bread, but you're likely to lose the war.

    December 4, 2007