EnglishEdit

Alternative formsEdit

EtymologyEdit

From obsolete shrick (1567), shreke, variants of earier screak, skricke (before 1500), from Middle English scrycke, from a North Germanic/Scandinavian language (compare Swedish skrika, Icelandic skríkja), from Proto-Germanic *skrīkijaną, *skrik- (compare English screech). More at screech.

PronunciationEdit

  • IPA(key): /ʃɹiːk/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -iːk

NounEdit

shriek (plural shrieks)

  1. A sharp, shrill outcry or scream; a shrill wild cry such as is caused by sudden or extreme terror, pain, or the like.
    • 1697, Virgil, “The Seventh Book of the Æneis”, in John Dryden, transl., The Works of Virgil: Containing His Pastorals, Georgics, and Æneis. [], London: [] Jacob Tonson, [], OCLC 403869432:
      Shrieks, clamours, murmurs, fill the frighted town.
    • 1912, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Tarzan of the Apes, Chapter 5:
      Sabor, the lioness, was a wise hunter. To one less wise the wild alarm of her fierce cry as she sprang would have seemed a foolish thing, for could she not more surely have fallen upon her victims had she but quietly leaped without that loud shriek?
  2. (UK, slang) An exclamation mark.

TranslationsEdit

VerbEdit

shriek (third-person singular simple present shrieks, present participle shrieking, simple past and past participle shrieked)

  1. (intransitive) To utter a loud, sharp, shrill sound or cry, as do some birds and beasts; to scream, as in a sudden fright, in horror or anguish.
  2. (transitive) To utter sharply and shrilly; to utter in or with a shriek or shrieks.

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