to move or sway with short, quick, irregular vibratory movements.
to tremble with emotion, cold, etc.
to become dislodged and fall (usually followed by off or down): Sand shakes off easily.
to move something, or its support or container, briskly to and fro or up and down, as in mixing: Shake before using.
to totter; become unsteady.
to clasp another's hand in greeting, agreement, congratulations, etc.: Let's shake and be friends again.
Music. to execute a trill.
to move (something or its support or container) to and fro or up and down with short, quick, forcible movements: to shake a bottle of milk.
to brandish or flourish: to shake a stick at someone.
to grasp (someone or something) firmly in an attempt to move or rouse by, or as by, vigorous movement to and fro: We shook the tree.
to dislodge or dispense (something) by short, quick, forcible movements of its support or container: We shook nuts from the tree.
to cause to sway, rock, totter, etc.: to shake the very foundations of society.
to agitate or disturb profoundly in feeling: The experience shook him badly.
to cause to doubt or waver; weaken: to shake one's self-esteem.
Music. to trill (a note).
to mix (dice) by rolling in the palm of the hand before they are cast.
to get rid of; elude: They tried to shake their pursuers.
an act or instance of shaking, rocking, swaying, etc.
(the) shakes. Informal.(used with a singular verb) a state or spell of trembling, as caused by fear, fever, cold, etc.: I was up all night with a fever and the shakes.
a disturbing blow; shock.
the act or a manner of clasping another's hand in greeting, agreement, etc.: He has a strong shake.
a cast of the dice: He threw an eight on his last shake.
something resulting from shaking.
a fissure in the earth.
an internal crack or fissure in timber.
Music. trill1 (def. 9).
an instant: I'll be with you in a shake.
Carpentry. a shingle or clapboard formed by splitting a short log into a number of tapered radial sections with a hatchet.
Horology. (in an escapement) the distance between the nearer corner of one pallet and the nearest tooth of the escape wheel when the other pallet arrests an escape tooth.
Chiefly South Midland U.S. shaker (def. 2).
a dance deriving from the twist.
Slang. the dried leaves of the marijuana plant.
to cause to descend by shaking; bring down.
to cause to settle.
to condition; test: to shake down a ship.
Informal. to extort money from.
Slang. to search (someone), especially to detect concealed weapons.
to rid oneself of; reject.
to get away from; leave behind.
Baseball, Softball. (of a pitcher) to indicate rejection of (a sign by the catcher for a certain pitch) by shaking the head or motioning with the glove.
to shake in order to mix or loosen.
to upset; jar.
to agitate mentally or physically: The threat of attack has shaken up the entire country.
Idioms about shake
no great shakes, Informal. of no particular ability; unimportant; common:As opera companies go, this one is no great shakes.
shake a leg, Informal.
to hurry up; get a move on: You'd better shake a leg or we'll miss the first act.
shake hands. hand (def. 80).
shake one's head,
to indicate disapproval, disagreement, negation, or uncertainty by turning one's head from one side to the other and back: I asked him if he knew the answer, but he just shook his head.
to indicate approval, agreement, affirmation or acceptance by nodding one's head up and down.
shake the dust from one's feet. dust (def. 26).
two shakes (of a lamb's tail), a very short time; a moment.
- shak·a·ble, shake·a·ble, adjective
- re·shake, verb, re·shook, re·shak·en, re·shak·ing.
- un·shak·a·ble, adjective
- un·shak·a·ble·ly, adverb
- un·shake·a·ble, adjective
- un·shake·a·ble·ly, adverb
- un·sha·ken, adjective
- well-shaken, adjective
- shake , sheik (see synonym study at the current entry)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use shake in a sentence
That sensor now sits in an image stabilization system that promises up to 6 stops of shake reduction.Fujifilm’s new 102-megapixel camera is the size of a typical DSLR | Stan Horaczek | January 30, 2021 | Popular-Science
If you use Sony’s video-specific apps, however, the camera can also record movement data from its onboard sensors while you’re shooting and use that information during the editing process to apply natural shake reduction tech.Sony’s pro-grade Alpha 1 is the first in a whole new category of cameras | Stan Horaczek | January 26, 2021 | Popular-Science
Once you get beyond 10x zoom, you’re relying on software and AI to combat things like digital artifacts and camera shake.Watch Samsung announce its new Galaxy S21 smartphones and Galaxy Buds Pro | Stan Horaczek | January 14, 2021 | Popular-Science
Think about a powder that you can mix with water or include with your regular meals instead of filling single shakes.
Take a look at available protein shakes, or make your own by including vegetables and healthy fats.
Even internally in the House, women are not getting their fair shake.
He would shake a chilled Coke, and then spray the soda into a cold glass of milk.
shake off any excess flour and gently place in the heated oil.Make Carla Hall’s Crispy Shallot Green Bean Casserole | Carla Hall | December 27, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
We shake hands and he immediately begins a monologue about prison breaks and South America.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days | David Freeman | December 13, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
I could not breathe.... When I would pass out, they would shake me and begin again.The Luxury Homes That Torture and Your Tax Dollars Built | Michael Daly | December 12, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
The women at once rose and began to shake out their draperies and relax their muscles.The Awakening and Selected Short Stories | Kate Chopin
I would not trust their removal to any other hand, and so, the panel comes out without a shake.Checkmate | Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
The only thing that at all tended to shake this conviction, was the extraordinary poltroonery of our new captive.
At the station the head porter received their inquiry for a Bradshaw with a dull stare and a shake of the head.Hilda Lessways | Arnold Bennett
Aristide picked it up and began to dance and shake his fist at the invisible police.The Joyous Adventures of Aristide Pujol | William J. Locke
British Dictionary definitions for shake
to move or cause to move up and down or back and forth with short quick movements; vibrate
to sway or totter or cause to sway or totter
to clasp or grasp (the hand) of (a person) in greeting, agreement, etc: he shook John by the hand; he shook John's hand; they shook and were friends
shake hands to clasp hands in greeting, agreement, etc
shake on it informal to shake hands in agreement, reconciliation, etc
to bring or come to a specified condition by or as if by shaking: he shook free and ran
(tr) to wave or brandish: he shook his sword
(tr often foll by up) to rouse, stir, or agitate
(tr) to shock, disturb, or upset: he was shaken by the news of her death
(tr) to undermine or weaken: the crisis shook his faith
to mix (dice) by rattling in a cup or the hand before throwing
(tr) Australian archaic, slang to steal
(tr) US and Canadian informal to escape from: can you shake that detective?
music to perform a trill on (a note)
(tr) US informal to fare or progress; happen as specified: how's it shaking?
shake a leg informal to hurry: usually used in the imperative
shake in one's shoes to tremble with fear or apprehension
shake one's head to indicate disagreement or disapproval by moving the head from side to side
shake the dust from one's feet to depart gladly or with the intention not to return
the act or an instance of shaking
a tremor or vibration
the shakes informal a state of uncontrollable trembling or a condition that causes it, such as a fever
informal a very short period of time; jiffy: in half a shake
a shingle or clapboard made from a short log by splitting it radially
a fissure or crack in timber or rock
an instance of shaking dice before casting
music another word for trill 1 (def. 1)
a dance, popular in the 1960s, in which the body is shaken convulsively in time to the beat
an informal name for earthquake
short for milk shake
no great shakes informal of no great merit or value; ordinary
- shakable or shakeable, adjective
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with shake
In addition to the idioms beginning with shake
- shake a leg
- shake a stick at
- shake down
- shake hands
- shake in one's boots
- shake off
- shake one's head
- shake someone's tree
- shake the dust from one's feet
- shake up
- shake with laughter
- all shook (shaken) up
- fair shake
- in two shakes
- more than one can shake a stick at
- movers and shakers
- no great shakes
- quake (shake) in one's boots
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.