Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia.


a. A freeman granted land by the king in return for military service in Anglo-Saxon England.
b. A man ranking above an ordinary freeman and below a nobleman in Anglo-Saxon England.
2. A feudal lord or baron in Scotland.

[Middle English, from Old English thegn; see tek- in Indo-European roots.]

thane′ship′ n.


or Tha·na  (tä′nə)
A city of west-central India, a manufacturing suburb of Mumbai.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


the rank, function or office of a thane
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.thaneship - the position of thane
berth, billet, post, situation, position, office, place, spot - a job in an organization; "he occupied a post in the treasury"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Thane of Cawdor is first mentioned in Shakespeare's play Macbeth when the witches predict he will receive the thaneship and will go on to become king.
This significant difference urges p laygoers to conclude that demonic possession involving the thaneship of Cawdor, if it does afflict Macbeth, does so by essentially excavating his humanity, leaving him the automaton of the metronomic "Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow" speech.
The essays by Stephen Glosecki and Peter Richardson frame this gathering because they look in obverse directions: Glosecki toward a Germanic past for ways to understand some surprising traces of totemism; Richardson toward a future of state formation that involves the redirection of kinship ties as well as the reformation of thaneship. As Glosecki looks to the literature for the living presence of archaic social and cultural features, Richardson looks to much of the literature both as urging new practices and as reflecting, even exploring the cultural conflicts and mixed effects of change.