verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to push with or as if with the shoulder: to shoulder through a crowd.

Nearby words

  1. shotwell,
  2. shotwell, james thomson,
  3. should,
  4. should have stood in bed, i,
  5. shoulda,
  6. shoulder bag,
  7. shoulder blade,
  8. shoulder board,
  9. shoulder girdle,
  10. shoulder harness


Origin of shoulder

before 900; (noun) Middle English sholder, s(c)hulder, Old English sculdor; cognate with Dutch schouder, German Schulter; (v.) Middle English shulderen, derivative of the noun

Related formsout·shoul·der, verb (used with object)re·shoul·der, verb (used with object)un·shoul·dered, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for shoulder

British Dictionary definitions for shoulder



the part of the vertebrate body where the arm or a corresponding forelimb joins the trunk: the pectoral girdle and associated structures
the joint at the junction of the forelimb with the pectoral girdle
a cut of meat including the upper part of the foreleg
printing the flat surface of a piece of type from which the face rises
tanning the portion of a hide covering the shoulders and neck of the animal, usually including the cheeks
the part of a garment that covers the shoulder
anything that resembles a shoulder in shape or position
the strip of unpaved land that borders a road
engineering a substantial projection or abrupt change in shape or diameter designed to withstand thrust
photog the portion of the characteristic curve of a photographic material indicating the maximum density that can be produced on the material
jewellery the part of a ring where the shank joins the setting
a shoulder to cry on a person one turns to for sympathy with one's troubles
give someone the cold shoulder informal
  1. to treat someone in a cold manner; snub
  2. to ignore or shun someone
put one's shoulder to the wheel informal to work very hard
rub shoulders with See rub (def. 11)
shoulder to shoulder
  1. side by side or close together
  2. in a corporate effort


(tr) to bear or carry (a burden, responsibility, etc) as if on one's shoulders
to push (something) with or as if with the shoulder
(tr) to lift or carry on the shoulders
shoulder arms military to bring the rifle vertically close to the right side with the muzzle uppermost and held at the trigger guard

Word Origin for shoulder

Old English sculdor; related to Old High German sculterra

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 shoulder
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for shoulder




The joint connecting the arm with the torso.
The part of the human body between the neck and upper arm.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with shoulder


In addition to the idiom beginning with shoulder

  • shoulder to shoulder

also see:

  • broad shoulders
  • chip on one's shoulder
  • cold shoulder
  • cry on someone's shoulder
  • good head on one's shoulders
  • head and shoulders above
  • on one's shoulders
  • put one's shoulder to the wheel
  • rub elbows (shoulders) with
  • shrug one's shoulders
  • square one's shoulders
  • straight from the shoulder
  • weight of the world on one's shoulders
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.