Definition of triad noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈtraɪæd//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈtraɪæd//
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  1. 1(formal) a group of three related people or things the classic triad of the visual arts: sculpture, architecture and painting
  2. 2(also Triad) a Chinese secret organization involved in criminal activity
  3. Word Originmid 16th cent.: from French triade, or via late Latin from Greek trias, triad-, from treis ‘three’. Sense 2 is a translation of Chinese San Ho Hui, literally ‘ three unite society’, i.e. ‘triple union society’, said to mean ‘the union of Heaven, Earth, and Man’.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: triad