- to play the bagpipe.
- Scot. and North England. to shriek.
- the sound of a bagpipe.
- Scot. and North England. any shrill sound.
Origin of skirl
Examples from the Web for skirl
Dancing was engaged in around the bonfire to the skirl of the philabeg.
Come here—or stay where ye are, and skirl as loud as ye can; it's a' ye're gude for.Bride of Lammermoor
Sir Walter Scott
Then a skirl of laughter, the piercingness of which, near to, could only be guessed at.The Disturbing Charm
Cannot one hear the skirl of the pipes amid that din of cannon and musketry?The Red Year
Shriller than the scream of shells above them was the skirl of pipes, going with them.Now It Can Be Told
- Scot and Northern English dialect (esp of bagpipes) to emit a shrill sound
- to play the bagpipes
- the sound of bagpipes
- a shrill sound
Word Origin and History for skirl
"to make a shrill sound," mid-15c., from a Scandinavian source (cf. Norwegian skyrlaskrella "to shriek"), of imitative origin. In reference to bagpipes, it is attested by 1660s and now rarely used otherwise. As a noun 1510s from the verb.