verb (used with object)



Electricity. being, having, or operating by means of a shunt: a shunt circuit; a shunt generator.

Origin of shunt

1175–1225; (v.) Middle English schunten, shonten to shy (said of horses); (noun) Middle English, derivative of the v.; akin to shun
Related formsshunt·er, nounun·shunt·ed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for shunt

Contemporary Examples of shunt

Historical Examples of shunt

  • Its function is to shunt the lift out of the gas, and this it will do without watching.

    With The Night Mail

    Rudyard Kipling

  • Look at that meter—and I've had to throw in number ten shunt!

    Spacehounds of IPC

    Edward Elmer Smith

  • All right,” he answered, endeavoring to look unconcerned, “shunt us off.

  • It would be cowardly to shunt this wretched task off on somebody else.

    Walter and the Wireless

    Sara Ware Bassett

  • Clear the fishing fleet and shunt the Florence to the rocks with the wind and current.

    El Diablo

    Brayton Norton

British Dictionary definitions for shunt



to turn or cause to turn to one side; move or be moved aside
railways to transfer (rolling stock) from track to track
electronics to divert or be diverted through a shunt
(tr) to evade by putting off onto someone else
(tr) motor racing slang to crash (a car)


the act or an instance of shunting
a railway point
electronics a low-resistance conductor connected in parallel across a device, circuit, or part of a circuit to provide an alternative path for a known fraction of the current
med a channel that bypasses the normal circulation of the blood: a congenital abnormality or surgically induced
British informal a collision which occurs when a vehicle runs into the back of the vehicle in front

Word Origin for shunt

C13: perhaps from shunen to shun
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 shunt

early 13c., "to shy, start," perhaps from shunen "to shun" (see shun), and altered by influence of shot or shut. Meaning "to turn aside" is from late 14c.; that of "move out of the way" is from 1706. Adopted by railways from 1842. Related: Shunted; shunting.


1838, in railway use, from shunt (v.). By technicians in the sense of "electrical conductor" from 1863. Medical use dates from 1923.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

shunt in Medicine




A passage between two natural body channels, such as blood vessels, especially one created surgically to divert or permit flow from one pathway or region to another; a bypass.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.