Definition of third class in English:

third class

noun

  • 1A group of people or things considered together as third best.

    • ‘To you few lacklustre folk in the third class; consider yourselves suspended (until you fix up).’
    1. 1.1British A university degree or examination result in the third-highest classification.
      ‘he obtained a third class in part 1 of the geography tripos’
    2. 1.2US mass noun A cheap class of mail for the handling of advertising and other printed material that weighs less than 16 ounces and is unsealed.
      ‘third class has been the fastest growing category of mail’
      post, letters, packages, parcels, correspondence, communications, airmail
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3historical mass noun The cheapest and least comfortable accommodation in a train or ship.
      ‘he grabbed a seat in third class’
      • ‘Her first passage cost twenty dollars and she and all the other immigrants on board travelled in steerage or third-class.’
      • ‘By comparison rail fares were around 1d per mile in first-class and 1 / 2d in third-class.’
      • ‘It doesn't matter whether you are in first class or third class, but it is essential that you get on the train.’

adverb & adjective

  • 1Of the third-best quality or of lower status.

    as adjective ‘many indigenous groups are still viewed as third-class citizens’
    • ‘You get third-class marks, you get a third-round offer.’
    • ‘Markus and his third-class version of guilty sympathy made me more incensed and panicked than Tom's threatening and blackmailing ways.’
    • ‘Unlike Gibson's kindly fiction, the historical Pilate was an ordinary imperial procurator in a third-class province who kept his legions busy with brutal executions of Jewish and Samaritan rebels.’
    • ‘Set in 1939, the film tells the story of one widow as she attempts to deal with her third-class status in India.’
    • ‘Companies injecting between 10 million and 40 million leva into a project will be considered third-class investors.’
    • ‘By contrast, Todd suggested, Scotland had a shortage of top-class courses, so tourists were being directed instead to second and third-class courses.’
    • ‘The triumph of the civil rights movement was that it removed the legal practices of segregation, which made black people second and third-class citizens.’
    • ‘Once classified by the government as a first-class city, Naga now languished with a third-class rating.’
    • ‘It's not just a third-class trucker's license.’
    • ‘Quasi-experiments, natural experiments, mere observations and qualitative investigations are castigated as second- or even third-class methods.’
    • ‘The stickers will be valid for one week, one month or one year and will allow their owners to use the highways, and the first, second and third-class roads in the respective period.’
    • ‘But it can never be forgotten that the system itself was evil, inhumane and degrading for the many millions who became its second and third class citizens.’
    • ‘We were third-class citizens, working hard to become citizens and to be able to vote.’
    • ‘The government has committed to pay the hospital costs of poor dengue patients treated in the third-class wards of hospitals.’
    • ‘First Class post isn't that cheap - so why are we getting a third class service?’
    • ‘By and large, their rights remain extremely restricted and with the tourist trade in full swing, and a major part of the national economy, they tend to be treated as second- or third-class citizens within their own country.’
    • ‘American workers confront a social and political system which turns them into second and third-class citizens.’
    • ‘These third-class citizens were often tenant farmers who found themselves in credit debt, a financial situation which left them legally bound to work without pay for elite land-owners.’
    • ‘If not for its efforts, our society and its institutions would still be quite exclusive, and we would still be truly third-class citizens.’
    • ‘It was decided to keep the minimum purchase prices of third class Oriental tobacco and to reduce the prices for third class broad-leaved tobacco.’
    1. 1.1British as adjective Relating to the third-highest division in a university examination.
      ‘he left university with a third-class degree’
      • ‘Fake your CV so it shows you failed most of your A-levels and just managed to scrape a third-class management degree from a former polytechnic your dad gave a few thousand quid to, and you will be an irresistible prospect.’
      • ‘This illustrated the male tendency to go to extremes - the human version being that men tended to get first or third-class degrees; women tended to get seconds.’
      • ‘She later retook her finals and was awarded a third class degree - the most she could be awarded under the regulations following a resit.’
      • ‘Like many others quoted today, I was only mildly interested in the story until the mention of Ms Dawson's third-class honours degree came up.’
      • ‘The system of first, upper and lower second and third-class degrees ‘has outlived its usefulness’ according to a working group of academics.’
      • ‘More specifically, every lecturer realises that awarding a third-class degree (or failing a student in a module) means that his teaching methods will inevitably be called to account.’
      • ‘When Rice left Bristol University, with a third class degree in theology, it was not immediately obvious what she might do with her life.’
      • ‘She was educated at St Paul's Girls' School and Somerville College, Oxford, where she read modern history and obtained a third-class degree in 1928.’
      • ‘He emerged with a third-class degree in English.’
      • ‘Georgina was awarded a third class honours degree from Melbourne University.’
      • ‘The appellant resat her finals and was awarded a third class degree, which is not good enough for the further career options which she wanted and still wants to pursue.’
      • ‘At 17 she passed the entrance exams at Cambridge and studied engineering, but although much has been made of her 154 IQ, she emerged from university with a third class degree.’
      • ‘Figures from Cambridge showed far fewer scored firsts and many more got third-class degrees than their peers.’
      • ‘Distracted from his studies, he graduates with a third-class degree and decides to become a writer.’
    2. 1.2US Relating to a cheap class of mail including advertising and other printed material weighing less than 16 ounces.
      as adjective ‘third-class mail’
      • ‘How many others do more than just toss the third-class postal announcements or e-mail newsletters or let their bumper stickers and buttons gather dust on a shelf?’
      • ‘The print material is sent via first-class mail the same day the video is sent via third-class mail.’
      • ‘Due to a backlog of requests - and because those requests were sent through the mail, third class - the alerts take up to six months to process.’
      • ‘Note of course that filing a change of address or hold in her name is a crime, and a change of address wouldn't stop the third-class mail anyway.’
      • ‘The divisions operate on a semiannual schedule, sending spring and fall meeting abstracts and newsletters to their members via third-class mail.’
    3. 1.3historical Relating to the cheapest and least comfortable accommodation in a train or ship.
      as adjective ‘a suffocating third-class compartment’
      as adverb ‘I travelled third class across Europe’
      • ‘The pair were travelling together on the same third-class ticket.’
      • ‘Many passengers expressed the same frustration: the third-class carriage is the only available option for trips to and from Cairo; and the service remains sub-human even as ticket prices continue to soar.’
      • ‘Once whilst traveling in a third class train compartment he lost his shoe whilst transferring from one carriage to another.’
      • ‘Indeed, the U.S. team traveled third class: long plane flights, cramped and cheap hotels and $10 per day in meal money.’
      • ‘He said the third-class train had no dining car, but that passengers often brought gas cylinders and small stoves aboard despite regulations forbidding it.’
      • ‘There are two third-class compartments and a brake van for the guard and luggage.’
      • ‘The trains on Saturday included a third-class carriage and a 1937 buffet car, which was the first to be restored to its original condition.’
      • ‘The description of their honeymoon voyage on a third-class train in India is a predictable Orientalist travelogue.’
      • ‘We had a good flight to Delhi, then headed out on an overnight train to Varanasi, which was actually okay, even though first and second class were fully booked, forcing us to travel third class!’
      • ‘The train gets ready to leave and we scramble for our precious third-class seats.’
      • ‘He compromises his position in English society by assaulting a servant in a third-class railway carriage.’
      • ‘On the same train, in the third-class section, sits Vera Claythorne.’
      • ‘He preferred the hard board of the third-class compartment, now abolished, rather than the cushioned first class of the railways.’
      • ‘What, I wondered, were second- and third-class accommodations like?’
      • ‘Segregated first-, second- and third-class Victorian railway carriages are the wrong model for 21st century education.’
      • ‘In order to draw as little attention as possible, I left Ping and and his father in a third-class compartment and settled myself into a second-class car.’
      • ‘After reaching the Victoria Terminus Railway Station in Mumbai, on my way to his ashram, I rode all night in a third class train compartment to Chandrapur, about 50 miles from Nagpur in Maharashtra.’
      • ‘He could not enter restaurants or cafés apart from third-class railway and steamer buffets.’

Pronunciation

third class