Last modified on 22 July 2014, at 17:08

skirt

EnglishEdit

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A skirt

EtymologyEdit

From Old Norse skyrta, from Proto-Germanic *skurtijǭ. Compare shirt.

PronunciationEdit

NounEdit

skirt (plural skirts)

  1. An article of clothing, usually worn by women and girls, that hangs from the waist and covers the lower part of the body.
    • c. 1907, O. Henry, The Purple Dress:
      "I like purple best," said Maida. "And old Schlegel has promised to make it for $8. It's going to be lovely. I'm going to have a plaited skirt and a blouse coat trimmed with a band of galloon under a white cloth collar with two rows of—"
  2. The part of a dress or robe that hangs below the waist.
    • 1885, Ada S. Ballin, The Science of Dress in Theory and Practice, Chapter XI:
      The petticoats and skirts ordinarily worn are decidedly the heaviest part of the dress ; hence it is necessary that some reform should be effected in these.
  3. A loose edging to any part of a dress.
    • Addison
      A narrow lace, or a small skirt of ruffled linen, which runs along the upper part of the stays before, and crosses the breast, being a part of the tucker, is called the modesty piece.
  4. A petticoat.
  5. (pejorative, slang) A woman.
    • 1931, Robert E. Howard, Alleys of Peril:
      "Mate," said the Cockney, after we'd finished about half the bottle, "it comes to me that we're a couple o' blightin' idjits to be workin' for a skirt."
      "What d'ya mean?" I asked, taking a pull at the bottle.
      "Well, 'ere's us, two red-blooded 'e-men, takin' orders from a lousy little frail, 'andin' the swag h'over to 'er, and takin' wot she warnts to 'and us, w'en we could 'ave the 'ole lot. Take this job 'ere now--"
  6. (UK, colloquial) Women collectively, in a sexual context.
  7. (UK, colloquial) Sexual intercourse with a woman.
  8. Border; edge; margin; extreme part of anything.
    • Shakespeare
      Here in the skirts of the forest.
  9. The diaphragm, or midriff, in animals.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Dunglison to this entry?)

Usage notesEdit

  • (article of clothing): It was formerly common to speak of “skirts” (plural) rather than “a skirt”. In some cases this served to emphasize an array of skirts of underskirts, or of pleats and folds in a single skirt; in other cases it made little or no difference in meaning.

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

VerbEdit

skirt (third-person singular simple present skirts, present participle skirting, simple past and past participle skirted)

  1. To be on or form the border of.
    The plain was skirted by rows of trees.
  2. To move around or along the border of; to avoid the center of.
    • 1922, Virginia Woolf, Jacob's Room Chapter 1
      An enormous man and woman (it was early-closing day) were stretched motionless, with their heads on pocket-handkerchiefs, side by side, within a few feet of the sea, while two or three gulls gracefully skirted the incoming waves, and settled near their boots.
    • 2013 June 1, “Ideas coming down the track”, The Economist, volume 407, number 8838, page 13 (Technology Quarterly): 
      A “moving platform” scheme [] is more technologically ambitious than maglev trains even though it relies on conventional rails. Local trains would use side-by-side rails to roll alongside intercity trains and allow passengers to switch trains by stepping through docking bays. […] This would also let high-speed trains skirt cities as moving platforms ferry passengers to and from the city centre.
  3. To cover with a skirt; to surround.
    • Milton
      skirted his loins and thighs with downy gold

Related termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

AnagramsEdit