The three Rs
R R ([aum]r). R, the eighteenth letter of the English alphabet, is a vocal consonant. It is sometimes called a semivowel, and a liquid. See Guide to Pronunciation, [sect][sect] 178, 179, and 250-254. ``R is the dog's letter and hurreth in the sound.'' --B. Jonson. [1913 Webster]

Note: In words derived from the Greek language the letter h is generally written after r to represent the aspirated sound of the Greek "r, but does not affect the pronunciation of the English word, as rhapsody, rhetoric. [1913 Webster] The English letter derives its form from the Greek through the Latin, the Greek letter being derived from the Ph[oe]nician, which, it is believed, is ultimately of Egyptian origin. Etymologically, R is most closely related to l, s, and n; as in bandore, mandole; purple, L. purpura; E. chapter, F. chapitre, L. capitulum; E. was, were; hare, G. hase; E. order, F. ordre, L. ordo, ordinis; E. coffer, coffin. [1913 Webster]

{The three Rs}, a jocose expression for reading, (w)riting, and (a)rithmetic, -- the fundamentals of an education. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • The three Rs — The three R s (as in the letter R ) is a phrase sometimes used [ [http://www.papert.org/articles/ObsoleteSkillSet.html Obsolete Skill Set: The 3 Rs Literacy and Letteracy in the Media Ages] ] to describe the foundations of a basic skills oriented …   Wikipedia

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  • (the) three Rs — the three ˈRs idiom (old fashioned) reading, writing and ↑arithmetic, thought to be the most important parts of a child s education Main entry: ↑threeidiom …   Useful english dictionary

  • the three Rs — reading, writing, and arithmetic, regarded as the fundamentals of learning. → R …   English new terms dictionary

  • Three Rs — (pronounced three ars ), can refer to: * Animal testing, an abbreviation for, reduce, replace, refine * The three Rs, a widely used abbreviation for the basic elements of a primary school curriculum: reading, ’riting (writing), and ’rithmetic… …   Wikipedia

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  • three — n. & adj. n. 1 a one more than two, or seven less than ten. b a symbol for this (3, iii, III). 2 a size etc. denoted by three. 3 the time of three o clock. 4 a set of three. 5 a card with three pips. adj. that amount to three. Phrases and idioms …   Useful english dictionary

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