- the representation of the absence of light on a form.
- the dark part of a picture, especially as representing the absence of illumination: Rembrandt's figures often emerge gradually from the shadows.
verb (used with object)
- shades of,
- shadow bands,
- shadow box,
- shadow boxing,
- shadow cabinet,
- shadow dance
Origin of shadow
Examples from the Web for shadow
Brinsley came from behind a police cruiser parked on a busy street in the shadow of the Tompkins Public Houses.Alleged Cop Killer Ismaaiyl Brinsley Had a Death Wish|M.L. Nestel|December 22, 2014|DAILY BEAST
If we begin to see the other as our possession and commodity, our shoe, the shadow of our shadow, is there ever a happy outcome?
They seem to belong to us, and then they freely go—behavior very uncharacteristic of a shadow or a shoe.
Hitchcock saw the work of, and probably met, Murnau, the great German filmmaker--the earliest master of bleak light and shadow.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days|David Freeman|December 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Krampus makes manifest the shadow sides of human nature that Christianity seeks to repress.
Alone the thick polled alders remain green, and in their shadow the brook is still darker.Nature Near London|Richard Jefferies
Margaret saw his shadow as it lingered, but she continued her employment.Love After Marriage; and Other Stories of the Heart|Caroline Lee Hentz
The germ and shadow and likelihood of each of those acts is in the fashion and line and detail of her garments.I, Mary MacLane|Mary MacLane
He had created a new property, as was testified by the vast pyramid of ivory that stood under the shadow of the great nwana-tree!The Bush Boys|Captain Mayne Reid
It is easy, says the king, alarmed, for the shadow to go down ten steps.The Book of Isaiah, Volume I (of 2)|George Adam Smith
Word Origin for shadow
Old English sceadwe, sceaduwe "the effect of interception of sunlight, dark image cast by someone or something when interposed between an object and a source of light," oblique cases ("to the," "from the," "of the," "in the") of sceadu (see shade (n.)). Shadow is to shade (n.) as meadow is to mead (n.2). Cf. Old Saxon skado, Middle Dutch schaeduwe, Dutch schaduw, Old High German scato, German schatten, Gothic skadus "shadow, shade."
From mid-13c. as "darkened area created by shadows, shade." From early 13c. in sense "anything unreal;" mid-14c. as "a ghost;" late 14c. as "a foreshadowing, prefiguration." Meaning "imitation, copy" is from 1690s. Sense of "the faintest trace" is from 1580s; that of "a spy who follows" is from 1859.
As a designation of members of an opposition party chosen as counterparts of the government in power, it is recorded from 1906. Shadow of Death (c.1200) translates Vulgate umbra mortis (Ps. xxiii:4, etc.), which itself translates Greek skia thanatou, perhaps a mistranslation of a Hebrew word for "intense darkness." In "Beowulf," Gendel is a sceadugenga, a shadow-goer, and another word for "darkness" is sceaduhelm. To be afraid of one's (own) shadow "be very timorous" is from 1580s.
Middle English schadowen, Kentish ssedwi, from late Old English sceadwian "to protect as with covering wings" (cf. also overshadow), from the root of shadow (n.). Cf. Old Saxon skadoian, Dutch schaduwen, Old High German scatewen, German (über)schatten. From mid-14c. as "provide shade;" late 14c. as "cast a shadow over" (literal and figurative), from early 15c. as "darken" (in illustration, etc.). Meaning "to follow like a shadow" is from c.1600 in an isolated instance; not attested again until 1872. Related: Shadowed; shadowing.
In addition to the idiom beginning with shadow
- shadow of one's self
- afraid of one's own shadow
- beyond a (shadow of a) doubt