From dialectal English wither (“against”) (compare wither-) + -s; see with. So-named because it is the part of the horse that pushes against a load. Compare German Widerrist (“withers”), from wider (“against”) + Rist (“wrist”).
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˈwɪð.ɚz/
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈwɪð.əz/
- Hyphenation: with‧ers
Audio (UK) (file)
withers pl (normally plural, singular wither)
- The part of the back of a four-legged animal that is between the shoulder blades; in many species the highest point of the body and the standard place to measure the animal's height. [from 1580]
Even in the plural, this noun refers to one object. The synonymous singular, wither, is less common.
- Third-person singular simple present indicative form of wither