Pronunciation: (shāk), [key]
— v., n. shook, shak•en, shak•ing,
- to move or sway with short, quick, irregular vibratory movements.
- to tremble with emotion, cold, etc.
- to become dislodged and fall (usually fol. by off or down): Sand shakes off easily.
- to move something, or its support or container, briskly to and fro or up and down, as in mixing: Shake before using.
- to totter; become unsteady.
- to clasp another's hand in greeting, agreement, congratulations, etc.: Let's shake and be friends again.
- to execute a trill.
- to move (something or its support or container) to and fro or up and down with short, quick, forcible movements: to shake a bottle of milk.
- to brandish or flourish: to shake a stick at someone.
- to grasp (someone or something) firmly in an attempt to move or rouse by, or as by, vigorous movement to and fro: We shook the tree.
- to dislodge or dispense (something) by short, quick, forcible movements of its support or container: We shook nuts from the tree.
- to cause to sway, rock, totter, etc.: to shake the very foundations of society.
- to agitate or disturb profoundly in feeling: The experience shook him badly.
- to cause to doubt or waver; weaken. to shake one's self-esteem.
- to trill (a note).
- to mix (dice) by rolling in the palm of the hand before they are cast.
- to get rid of; elude: They tried to shake their pursuers.
- You'd better shake a leg or we'll miss the first act.
- to hurry up; get a move on:You'd better shake a leg or we'll miss the first act.
- to dance.
- to shake down a ship.
- to cause to descend by shaking; bring down.
- to cause to settle.
- to condition; test:to shake down a ship.
- Informal.to extort money from.
- Slang.to search (someone), esp. to detect concealed weapons.
- See(def. 64).
- to rid oneself of; reject.
- to get away from; leave behind.
- Baseball,Softball.(of a pitcher) to indicate rejection of (a sign by the catcher for a certain pitch) by shaking the head or motioning with the glove.
- I asked him if he knew the answer, but he just shook his head.
- to indicate disapproval, disagreement, negation, or uncertainty by turning one's head from one side to the other and back:I asked him if he knew the answer, but he just shook his head.
- to indicate approval, agreement, affirmation or acceptance by nodding one's head up and down.
- See(def. 18).
- The threat of attack has shaken up the entire country.
- to shake in order to mix or loosen.
- to upset; jar.
- to agitate mentally or physically:The threat of attack has shaken up the entire country.
- an act or instance of shaking, rocking, swaying, etc.
- tremulous motion.
- a tremor.
- a state or spell of trembling, as caused by fear, fever, cold, etc. (usually prec. by the).
- a disturbing blow; shock.
- the act or a manner of clasping another's hand in greeting, agreement, etc.: He has a strong shake.
- chance or fate; deal: a fair shake.
- a cast of the dice: He threw an eight on his last shake.
- something resulting from shaking.
- an earthquake.
- a fissure in the earth.
- an internal crack or fissure in timber.
- trill (def. 9).
- an instant: I'll be with you in a shake.
- a shingle or clapboard formed by splitting a short log into a number of tapered radial sections with a hatchet.
- (in an escapement) the distance between the nearer corner of one pallet and the nearest tooth of the escape wheel when the other pallet arrests an escape tooth.
- shaker (def. 2).
- a dance deriving from the twist.
- the dried leaves of the marijuana plant.
- of no particular ability; unimportant; common: As opera companies go, this one is no great shakes.
- a very short time; a moment.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.