Dictionary.com

shock

1
[ shok ]
/ ʃɒk /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: shock / shocked / shocker / shocking on Thesaurus.com

noun

verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to undergo a shock.

QUIZZES

QUIZ YOURSELF ON PARENTHESES AND BRACKETS APLENTY!

Set some time apart to test your bracket symbol knowledge, and see if you can keep your parentheses, squares, curlies, and angles all straight!
Question 1 of 7
Let’s start with some etymology: What are the origins of the typographical word “bracket”?

Meet Grammar Coach

Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing

Meet Grammar Coach

Improve Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help

Origin of shock

1
First recorded in 1565–75; from Middle French choc “armed encounter,” noun derivative of choquer “to clash (in battle),” from Germanic (probably Frankish); compare Dutch schokken “to shake, jolt, jerk”

synonym study for shock

8. Shock, startle, paralyze, stun suggest a sudden, sharp surprise that affects one somewhat like a blow. Shock suggests a strong blow, as it were, to one's nerves, sentiments, sense of decency, etc.: The onlookers were shocked by the accident. Startle implies the sharp surprise of sudden fright: to be startled by a loud noise. Paralyze implies such a complete shock as to render one temporarily helpless: paralyzed with fear. Stun implies such a shock as bewilders or stupefies: stunned by the realization of an unpleasant truth.

OTHER WORDS FROM shock

Definition for shock (2 of 3)

shock2
[ shok ]
/ ʃɒk /

noun

a group of sheaves of grain placed on end and supporting one another in the field.

verb (used with object)

to make into shocks.

Origin of shock

2
First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English shok, shocke, shok(k)e; cognate with Middle Low German, Low German scok, schok, all meaning “shock of grain, group of sixty,” German Schock “sixty”

OTHER WORDS FROM shock

shocker, noun

Definition for shock (3 of 3)

shock3
[ shok ]
/ ʃɒk /

noun

a thick, bushy mass, as of hair.
Also shock dog . a dog with long, shaggy hair.

adjective

shaggy, as hair.

Origin of shock

3
First recorded in 1815–20; special use of shock2 (the hair being compared to a shock of wheat)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

VOCAB BUILDER

What is a basic definition of shock?

A shock is a sudden, intense mental or physical impact. Shock is also the effect of having electricity run through the body. To shock someone means to intensely surprise or horrify someone. Shock has several other senses as a noun and a verb.

The word shock often refers to a sudden mental disturbance that causes an intense emotion, usually surprise or horror. You might feel a shock when you see a failing grade on a test. The word shock can also refer to whatever causes this sudden surprise. The noun shocker and adjective shocking often refer to this sense of shock.

  • Used in a sentence: It took Julie a few minutes to recover from the shock of seeing a dancing circus bear in her living room. 

Shock is used in this same sense as a verb to mean to cause someone to be suddenly overwhelmed by emotion (usually surprise or horror).

  • Used in a sentence: I was shocked by my incredibly high phone bill.  

A shock can also be a sudden physical impact. This sense is less common than the emotional one.

  • Used in a sentence: The springs absorbed most of the shock from colliding with the wall. 

Shock also refers to the bodily imbalance, discomfort, or damage caused by electricity running through a person’s body. This sense is often specifically referred to as “an electric shock,” especially when discussing injuries or medical emergencies.

  • Used in a sentence: The electrician barely survived the electric shock he got while working on the power lines. 

In this same sense, shock is used as a verb to mean to give an electric shock to someone.

  • Used in a sentence: The squirrel was shocked by the cord while chewing on it.

Where does shock come from?

The first records of shock come from around 1565. It ultimately comes from the Old French verb choquier, meaning “to clash in batte.”

Did you know ... ?

What are some other forms related to shock

  • shocker (noun)
  • shocking (adjective)
  • shockable (adjective)
  • shockability (noun)
  • shocklike (adjective)

What are some synonyms for shock?

What are some words that share a root or word element with shock?

What are some words that often get used in discussing shock?

How is shock used in real life?

Shock is a common word that most often refers to sudden surprises or electrical accidents.

Try using shock!

True or False?

If something is a shock, it is unlikely to bother someone as they expected it to happen.

Example sentences from the Web for shock

British Dictionary definitions for shock (1 of 3)

shock1
/ (ʃɒk) /

verb

to experience or cause to experience extreme horror, disgust, surprise, etcthe atrocities shocked us; she shocks easily
to cause a state of shock in (a person)
to come or cause to come into violent contact; jar

noun

Derived forms of shock

shockable, adjectiveshockability, noun

Word Origin for shock

C16: from Old French choc, from choquier to make violent contact with, of Germanic origin; related to Middle High German schoc

British Dictionary definitions for shock (2 of 3)

shock2
/ (ʃɒk) /

noun

a number of sheaves set on end in a field to dry
a pile or stack of unthreshed corn

verb

(tr) to set up (sheaves) in shocks

Word Origin for shock

C14: probably of Germanic origin; compare Middle Low German, Middle Dutch schok shock of corn, group of sixty

British Dictionary definitions for shock (3 of 3)

shock3
/ (ʃɒk) /

noun

a thick bushy mass, esp of hair

adjective

rare bushy; shaggy

Word Origin for shock

C19: perhaps from shock ²
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

Medical definitions for shock

shock
[ shŏk ]

n.

v.

To induce a state of physical shock in a person.
To subject a person to an electric shock.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for shock

shock
[ shŏk ]

An instance of the passage of an electric current through the body. The amount of injury caused by electric shock depends on the type and strength of the current, the length of time the current is applied, and the route the current takes once it enters the body.
A life-threatening condition marked by a severe drop in blood pressure, resulting from serious injury or illness.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with shock

shock

see culture shock.

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