Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
The Collaborative International Dictionary
Tread \Tread\, v. i. [imp. Trod; p. p. Trodden, Trod; p. pr. & vb. n. Treading.] [OE. treden, AS. tredan; akin to OFries. treda, OS. tredan, D. & LG. treden, G. treten, OHG. tretan, Icel. tro?a, Sw. tr[*a]da, tr["a]da, Dan. tr[ae]de, Goth. trudan, and perhaps ultimately to F. tramp; cf. Gr. ? a running, Skr. dram to run. Cf. Trade, Tramp, Trot.]
To set the foot; to step.
Where'er you tread, the blushing flowers shall rise.
Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.
The hard stone Under our feet, on which we tread and go.
To walk or go; especially, to walk with a stately or a cautious step.
Ye that . . . stately tread, or lowly creep.
To copulate; said of birds, esp. the males. --Shak. To tread on or To tread upon.
To trample; to set the foot on in contempt. ``Thou shalt tread upon their high places.''
--Deut. xxxiii. 29.
to follow closely. ``Year treads on year.''
To tread upon the heels of, to follow close upon. ``Dreadful consequences that tread upon the heels of those allowances to sin.''
One woe doth tread upon another's heel.
Tread \Tread\, n.
A step or stepping; pressure with the foot; a footstep; as, a nimble tread; a cautious tread.
She is coming, my own, my sweet; Were it ever so airy a tread, My heart would hear her and beat.
Manner or style of stepping; action; gait; as, the horse has a good tread.
Way; track; path. [R.]
The act of copulation in birds.
(Arch.) The upper horizontal part of a step, on which the foot is placed.
(Fort.) The top of the banquette, on which soldiers stand to fire over the parapet.
The part of a wheel that bears upon the road or rail.
The part of a rail upon which car wheels bear.
(Biol.) The chalaza of a bird's egg; the treadle.
(Far.) A bruise or abrasion produced on the foot or ankle of a horse that interferes. See Interfere, 3.
Tread \Tread\, v. t.
To step or walk on.
Forbid to tread the promised land he saw.
Methought she trod the ground with greater grace.
To beat or press with the feet; as, to tread a path; to tread land when too light; a well-trodden path.
To go through or accomplish by walking, dancing, or the like. `` I am resolved to forsake Malta, tread a pilgrimage to fair Jerusalem.''
--Beau. & Fl.
They have measured many a mile, To tread a measure with you on this grass.
To crush under the foot; to trample in contempt or hatred; to subdue.
Through thy name will we tread them under that rise up against us.
5. To copulate with; to feather; to cover; -- said of the male bird.
To tread out, to press out with the feet; to press out, as wine or wheat; as, to tread out grain with cattle or horses.
To tread the stage, to act as a stageplayer; to perform a part in a drama.
Etymology 1 vb. 1 (context intransitive English) To step or walk (on or over something); to trample. 2 (context transitive English) To step or walk upon. 3 To beat or press with the feet. 4 To go through or accomplish by walking, dancing, etc. 5 To crush under the foot; to trample in contempt or hatred; to subdue. 6 (context intransitive English) To copulate; said of (especially male) birds. 7 (context transitive of a male bird English) To copulate with. 8 (en-past of: tread) Etymology 2
n. 1 A step. 2 A manner of stepping. 3 (context obsolete English) A way; a track or path. 4 The grooves carved into the face of a tire, used to give the tire traction. (from 1900s) 5 The grooves on the bottom of a shoe or other footwear, used to give grip or traction. 6 The horizontal part of a step in a flight of stairs. 7 The sound made when someone or something is walking. 8 (context biology English) The chalaza of a bird's egg; the treadle. 9 The act of copulation in birds. 10 (context fortification English) The top of the banquette, on which soldiers stand to fire over the parapet. 11 A bruise or abrasion produced on the foot or ankle of a horse that interferes, or strikes its feet together.
v. put down or press the foot, place the foot; "For fools rush in where angels fear to tread"; "step on the brake" [syn: step]
tread or stomp heavily or roughly; "The soldiers trampled across the fields" [syn: trample]
crush as if by treading on; "tread grapes to make wine"
brace (an archer's bow) by pressing the foot against the center
apply (the tread) to a tire
mate with; "male birds tread the females"
The tread of a tire or track refers to the rubber on its circumference that makes contact with the road or the ground. As tires are used, the tread is worn off, limiting its effectiveness in providing traction. A worn tire can often be retreaded.
The grooves in the tire are correctly called the tread pattern, or simply the pattern, but the word tread is often used casually to refer to the pattern of grooves molded into the rubber. The grooves are not the tread, as they do not make contact with the ground. This distinction becomes significant in the case of racing slicks: which certainly have a tread but do not have grooves, and so they neither have a pattern.
Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
Old English tredan "to tread, step on, trample; traverse, pass over" (class V strong verb; past tense træd, past participle treden), from Proto-Germanic *tred- (cognates: Old Saxon tredan, Old Frisian treda, Middle Dutch treden, Old High German tretan, German treten, Gothic trudan, Old Norse troða), from PIE *der- (1) "assumed base of roots meaning 'to run, walk, step'" [Watkins]. Related: Trod; treading.
early 13c., "a step or stepping, pressure with the foot," from tread (v.); in reference to automobile tires, it is recorded from 1906.
Usage examples of "tread".
He headed for the fountain to wait for his grandson, treading like a snow leopard across the Himalayas, knowing a mate must be somewhere up there among the alpenglow and mist.
For the last few hundred yards the amtracs had been crawling over the shallow tidal flats, churning the coral mud under their heavy treads and rising farther and farther out of the lagoon.
Downward they fled, From under the haunted roof, To the valley aquake with the tread Of an iron-resounding hoof, As of legions of thunderful horse Broken loose and in line tramping hard.
Puerilities of fancy and monstrosities of passion arbitrarily connected with principles claiming to be eternal truths should be carefully separated, and not the whole be despised and trodden on together.
Surely this is madness, Atene, for how knowest thou in what likeness thou mightest be sent to tread the earth again?
Thy Father, who is holy, wise, and pure, Suffers the hypocrite or atheous priest To tread his sacred courts, and minister About his altar, handling holy things, Praying or vowing, and voutsafed his voice 490 To Balaam reprobate, a prophet yet Inspired: disdain not such access to me.
I have touched lightly on the matter, only to give to my readers some idea of my conduct in my own country, where I began to tread a path which was to lead me to a state prison as inscrutable as it was unconstitutional.
Ghostly footfalls trod the old Beld mansion, and bloodshed and murder followed in their wake!
In a very short time Percy appeared again and slowly advanced to Blinky with a decided tread.
The bondslave, John Ruark, quietly considered his master, having already realized that he would have to tread lightly when dealing with him, for the man was as sharp-witted as it had been rumored.
There, no doubt, they tread on rugs from Teheran and are diverted by the bulbul and play upon the dulcimer and feed upon sweetmeats.
And this patented inner tread means Bungee Condoms hug the surface to prevent dangerous slips and slides.
Soon after Mariuccia came in, looking timid, confused, and as if she were doubtful of the path she was treading.
I, who have trodden upon kingdoms and humbled sultans, come to my doom because of a cringing trull and a Caphar renegade!
I trod water and organized the nylon cord, then struck out for the edge of the cenote, paying out the cord behind me, until I grasped a tree root at water-level.