pilliwinks

[ pil-uh-wingks ]
/ ˈpɪl əˌwɪŋks /

noun (used with a singular or plural verb)

an old instrument of torture similar to the thumbscrew.

QUIZZES

THE SEPTEMBER WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ HAS ARRIVED!

Go ahead, test your mental legerity to see how many words you remember from last month!
Question 1 of 10
Which definition best describes “spang”?

Origin of pilliwinks

1350–1400; Scots variant of late Middle English pyrwykes, pyrewinkes< ?

Words nearby pilliwinks

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for pilliwinks

pilliwinks
/ (ˈpɪlɪˌwɪŋks) /

pl n

a medieval instrument of torture for the fingers and thumbs

Word Origin for pilliwinks

C14: of uncertain origin
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