Third (chord)

In music, the third factor of a chord is the note or pitch two scale degrees above the root or tonal center. When the third is the bass note, or lowest note, of the expressed triad, the chord is in first inversion Play .

Third (E), in red, of a C major chord (Play ).
First inversion C major triad. The third is the bass.

Conventionally, the third is third in importance to the root and fifth, with the third in all primary triads (I, IV, V and i, iv, v) being either major or minor. In jazz chords and theory, the third is required due to it determining chord quality.

The third in both major and augmented chords is major (E in C) and the third in both minor and diminished chords is minor (E in C).

Two added chords with mixed thirds, thirds separated by octave.
Play chord on left [1] Play chord on right