n. 1 A cask whose content is one third of a pipe; that is, forty-two wine gallons; also, a liquid measure of forty-two wine, or thirty-five imperial, gallons. 2 A cask larger than a barrel, and smaller than a hogshead or a puncheon, in which salt provisions, rice, etc., are packed for shipment. 3 (context music English) The third tone of the scale. See mediant. 4 (context card games English) A sequence of three playing cards of the same suit. Tierce of ace, king and queen is called tierce-major. 5 (context fencing English) The third defensive position, with the sword hand held at waist height, and the tip of the sword at head height. 6 (context heraldiccharge English) An ordinary that covers the left or right third of the field of a shield or flag. 7 (context religion Roman Catholic English) The third hour of the day, or nine a. m,; one of the canonical hours; also, the service appointed for that hour. 8 (context obsolete English) One sixtieth of a second, i.e., the third in a series of fractional parts in a sexagesimal number system. (Also known as a third.)
a. (context heraldry English) Divided into three equal parts of three different tinctures; said of an escutcheon.
The Collaborative International Dictionary
Tierce \Tierce\, n. [F. tierce a third, from tiers, tierce, third, fr. L. tertius the third; akin to tres three. See Third, Three, and cf. Terce, Tercet, Tertiary.]
A cask whose content is one third of a pipe; that is, forty-two wine gallons; also, a liquid measure of forty-two wine, or thirty-five imperial, gallons.
A cask larger than a barrel, and smaller than a hogshead or a puncheon, in which salt provisions, rice, etc., are packed for shipment.
(Mus.) The third tone of the scale. See Mediant.
A sequence of three playing cards of the same suit. Tierce of ace, king, queen, is called tierce-major.
(Fencing) A position in thrusting or parrying in which the wrist and nails are turned downward.
(R. C. Ch.) The third hour of the day, or nine a. m,; one of the canonical hours; also, the service appointed for that hour.
Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
old unit of liquid measure equal to one-third of a pipe (42 gallons), 1530s, from Anglo-French ters, Old French tierce (11c.). used in the sense "one-third" in various ways, from Latin tertia, fem. of tertius "a third," from PIE *tri-tyo-, from root *trei- (see three). Also used in Middle English for "a third part" (late 15c.), "the third hour of the canonical day" (ending at 9 a.m.), late 14c., and, in astronomy and geometry, "sixtieth part of a second of an arc."
Tiercé is a commune in the Maine-et-Loire department in western France.
The tierce (also terse) is both an archaic volume unit of measure of goods and the name of the cask of that size. The most common definitions are either one-third of a pipe or forty-two gallons.
n. the third canonical hour; about 9 a.m. [syn: terce]
Usage examples of "tierce".
Quarte, tierce, and saccoon, say I, and the devil take your estramacons and passados!
Then, just before the hour of tierce, the great lairdsMoray, Lovat, Ayr, Midlothian, Aberdeen, Ross, Angus, Banff, Argyll and Berwickappeared in company with the Lord Marshal, James Stewart, to announce that King Alexander had died of his wounds in the night, as, too, had Cardinal de Mandojana.
Knowing himself to be nearly done, he attempted a botte coupee, feinting in high carte and thrusting in a low tierce.
Tierce said, not quite insubordinately, as he handed Flim's drink back to him.
In spite of the complaints of the French as to the nonobservance of the rules, in spite of the fact that to some highly placed Russians it seemed rather disgraceful to fight with a cudgel and they wanted to assume a pose en quarte or en tierce according to all the rules, and to make an adroit thrust en prime, and so on the cudgel of the people's war was lifted with all its menacing and majestic strength, and without consulting anyone's tastes or rules and regardless of anything else, it rose and fell with stupid simplicity, but consistently, and belabored the French till the whole invasion had perished.
Tierce after Tierce, too, of water, and bread, and beef, and shooks of staves, and iron bundles of hoops, were hoisted out, till at last the piled decks were hard to get about.
I immediately got a friend to have two tierces of seed forwarded to me.
The Admiral contributed three tierces of a noble claret to the cargo, observing that he should willingly drink green tea for the rest of the commission rather than jeopardize Ariel's chances.