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shingle

1
[shing-guh l]
noun
  1. 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.
  2. a woman's close-cropped haircut.
  3. Informal. a small signboard, especially as hung before a doctor's or lawyer's office.
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verb (used with object), shin·gled, shin·gling.
  1. to cover with shingles, as a roof.
  2. to cut (hair) close to the head.
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Idioms
  1. hang out one's shingle, Informal. to establish a professional practice, especially in law or medicine; open an office.
  2. have/be a shingle short, Australian Slang. to be mentally disturbed, mad, or eccentric.
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Origin of shingle

1
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)
Related formsshin·gler, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for hang out one's shingle

shingle

1
noun
  1. a thin rectangular tile, esp one made of wood, that is laid with others in overlapping rows to cover a roof or a wall
  2. a woman's short-cropped hairstyle
  3. US and Canadian a small signboard or nameplate fixed outside the office of a doctor, lawyer, etc
  4. a shingle short Australian informal unintelligent or mentally subnormal
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verb (tr)
  1. to cover (a roof or a wall) with shingles
  2. to cut (the hair) in a short-cropped style
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Derived Formsshingler, noun

Word Origin for shingle

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

shingle

2
noun
  1. coarse gravel, esp the pebbles found on beaches
  2. a place or area strewn with shingle
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Derived Formsshingly, adjective

Word Origin for shingle

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

shingle

3
verb
  1. (tr) metallurgy to hammer or squeeze the slag out of (iron) after puddling in the production of wrought iron
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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

Word Origin and History for hang out one's shingle

shingle

n.1

"thin piece of wood," c.1200, scincle, from Late Latin scindula (also the source of German Schindel), altered (by influence of Greek schidax "lath" or schindalmos "splinter") from Latin scandula "roof tile," from scindere "to cleave, split," from PIE root *sked- "to split." Meaning "small signboard" is first attested 1842. Sense of "woman's short haircut" is from 1924; the verb meaning "to cut the hair so as to give the impression of overlapping shingles" is from 1857.

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shingle

n.2

"loose stones on a seashore," 1510s, probably related to Norwegian singl "small stones," or North Frisian singel "gravel," both said to be echoic of the sound of water running over pebbles.

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shingle

v.

"cover with shingles" (of houses), 1560s, from shingle (n.). Related: Shingled; shingling.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with hang out one's shingle

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.

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shingle

see hang out one's shingle.

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