threshold: the point, stage, or degree of intensity at which an effect begins to be produced. The lower the threshold, the sooner and more easily does the effect begin.

Dictionary of Sexology Project: Main Index

The history of this word is somewhat amazing. Most 16th century homes had dirt floors. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt, hence the saying "dirt poor." The wealthy had slate floors, which would get slippery in the winter when wet. So they spread thresh (the residue from when wheat or barley is threshed) on the floor to help keep their footing. As the winter wore on they kept adding more thresh until when you opened the door it would all start slipping outside. So a piece of wood was placed at the entryway, hence a "threshold."

In aviation, the business end of a runway - i.e. the area where touchdown is possible. Marked by two sets of lengthwise white stripes, immediately before the numbers.

Some runways have a displaced threshold, marked by a series of white arrows, that indicates an area which, although paved, may not be used for landing (for surface integrity or other reasons), but which is still usable for runup or takeoff.

Where grooms presumably take their brides. Once the marriage ceremony is completed, the groom will inevitably take his wife to their permanent residence (save a few circumstances). It is tradition in many cultures (American and Western European for sure) for the couple to not simply walk through the doorway of their abode. Instead, the groom picks up his bride (in cradle fashion), and carries her through the doorway, or "through the threshold." This act is most often considered romantic, and a big ol' kiss often follows the carrying.

Threshold is a Magic: the Gathering (a trading card game)special ability that came out with the set Odyssey (released October 2001). Basically, a player has threshold if he has 7 or more cards in his graveyard (the place where used spells/dead creatures go). When a player has threshold, some cards (the ones that have “threshold: blahblahblah” printed on them) he has will gain new attributes.

For example, the card Divine Sacrament is an enchantment that says that all white creatures get +1/+1. It also has “threshold: all white creatures get an additional +1/+1”. If the player that controls the Divine Sacrament has 7 or more cards in his graveyard, he has threshold, and so all white creatures get the additional +1/+1, so they get +2/+2.

One of the most random aspects of threshold is that a player has threshold, not a card. In casual play, this doesn’t really matter, but this can be important in professional games (Worlds, Pro Tour, Grand Prix, etc.) where the prize purse can exceed $25,000.

One final note: the other special set-specific ability that came out with Odyssey was Flashback. Maybe I’ll explain this later.

My threshold is broken. I mean this literally. There is something wrong with the metal strip that covers the place where my building's hallway meets my condo's entryway. It is supposed to be held in place by three screws, but the screws do not stay in place. They pop up; the threshold wobbles; I trip as I enter or leave home. It was not always like this. My threshold broke around the time Steve and I broke up.

It is important to keep the entrance to one's home properly maintained. A broken threshold is VERY bad feng shui. I whipped out a screwdriver and tried to drive the screws into place, but they will not bite into the floor. The screws are not stripped; I do not understand. It must be something cosmic or emotional. It is a metaphor that has manifested itself in reality.

sta·sis /ˈsteɪsɪs, ˈstæsɪs/ stey-sis, stas-is –noun, plural sta·ses /ˈsteɪsiz, ˈstæsiz/ stey-seez, stas-eez
1. the state of equilibrium or inactivity caused by opposing equal forces.

It is dangerous to enter or exit my home, so it seems that right now no one should come into or go out of my life. Equilibrium sounds better than stagnation. Thank you for the positive spin, Mr. Dictionary.

Thresh"old (?), n. [OE. threswold, þreshwold, AS. þrescwald, þerscwald, þerscold, þrescold, fr. þrescan, þerscan, to thresh; akin to Icel. þreskjode, þroskuldr, Sw. troskel, Dan. taerskel. See Thrash.]


The plank, stone, or piece of timber, which lies under a door, especially of a dwelling house, church, temple, or the like; the doorsill; hence, entrance; gate; door.


Fig.: The place or point of entering or beginning, entrance; outset; as, the threshold of life.


© Webster 1913.

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