[ shing-guh l ]
/ ˈʃɪŋ gəl /


a thin piece of wood, slate, metal, asbestos, or the like, usually oblong, laid in overlapping rows to cover the roofs and walls of buildings.
a woman's close-cropped haircut.
Informal. a small signboard, especially as hung before a doctor's or lawyer's office.

verb (used with object), shin·gled, shin·gling.

to cover with shingles, as a roof.
to cut (hair) close to the head.

Idioms for shingle

    hang out one's shingle, Informal. to establish a professional practice, especially in law or medicine; open an office.
    have/be a shingle short, Australian Slang. to be mentally disturbed, mad, or eccentric.

Origin of shingle

1150–1200; Middle English scincle, sc(h)ingle < Medieval Latin scindula lath, shingle (Middle English -g- apparently by association with another unidentified word), Latin scandula (Medieval Latin -i- perhaps by association with Greek schíza lath, splinter, or related words)


shin·gler, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for hang out one's shingle (1 of 3)

/ (ˈʃɪŋɡəl) /


a thin rectangular tile, esp one made of wood, that is laid with others in overlapping rows to cover a roof or a wall
a woman's short-cropped hairstyle
US and Canadian a small signboard or nameplate fixed outside the office of a doctor, lawyer, etc
a shingle short Australian informal unintelligent or mentally subnormal

verb (tr)

to cover (a roof or a wall) with shingles
to cut (the hair) in a short-cropped style

Derived forms of shingle

shingler, noun

Word Origin for shingle

C12 scingle, from Late Latin scindula a split piece of wood, from Latin scindere to split

British Dictionary definitions for hang out one's shingle (2 of 3)

/ (ˈʃɪŋɡəl) /


coarse gravel, esp the pebbles found on beaches
a place or area strewn with shingle

Derived forms of shingle

shingly, adjective

Word Origin for shingle

C16: of Scandinavian origin; compare Norwegian singl pebbles, Frisian singel gravel

British Dictionary definitions for hang out one's shingle (3 of 3)

/ (ˈʃɪŋɡəl) /


(tr) metallurgy to hammer or squeeze the slag out of (iron) after puddling in the production of wrought iron

Word Origin for shingle

C17: from Old French dialect chingler to whip, from chingle belt, from Latin cingula girdle; see cingulum
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Idioms and Phrases with hang out one's shingle (1 of 2)

hang out one's shingle

Open an office, especially a professional practice, as in Bill's renting that office and hanging out his shingle next month. This American colloquialism dates from the first half of the 1800s, when at first lawyers, and later also doctors and business concerns, used shingles for signboards.

Idioms and Phrases with hang out one's shingle (2 of 2)


see hang out one's shingle.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.