n. often thews
1. Muscular power or strength.
2. A well-developed sinew or muscle: "sinews of steel, thews of iron, abdomen like one of those old-time washing boards" (Michael Kelly).
[Middle English, individual habit, virtue, strength (sense influenced by SINEW), from Old English thēaw, a custom, habit.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.