skittish

EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

Probably from skite (to move lightly and hurriedly; to move suddenly, particularly in an oblique direction (Scotland, Northern England)) +‎ -ish; compare skitter.

PronunciationEdit

  • IPA(key): /ˈskɪtɪʃ/
  • (T-flapping) IPA(key): [ˈskɪɾɪʃ]
  • Hyphenation: skit‧tish
  • (file)

AdjectiveEdit

skittish (comparative more skittish, superlative most skittish)

  1. Easily scared or startled; timid.
    The dog likes people he knows, but he is skittish around strangers.
    • 1557, Roger Edgeworth, Sermons Very Fruitfull, Godly, and Learned, London: Robert Caly, The fiftenth treatice or Sermon,[1]
      All such be like a skittish starting horse, whiche coming ouer a bridge, wil start for a shadowe, or for a stone lying by him, and leapeth ouer on the other side into the water, & drowneth both horse and man.
  2. Wanton; changeable; fickle.
  3. Difficult to manage; tricky.

SynonymsEdit

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

See alsoEdit