[ silk ]
/ sɪlk /
the soft, lustrous fiber obtained as a filament from the cocoon of the silkworm.
thread made from this fiber.
cloth made from this fiber.
a garment of this cloth.
a gown of such material worn distinctively by a King's or Queen's Counsel at the English bar.
silks, the blouse and peaked cap, considered together, worn by a jockey or sulky driver in a race.
Informal. a parachute, especially one opened aloft.
any fiber or filamentous matter resembling silk, as a filament produced by certain spiders, the thread of a mollusk, or the like.
the hairlike styles on an ear of corn.
- a King's or Queen's Counsel.
- any barrister of high rank.
made of silk.
resembling silk; silky.
of or relating to silk.
verb (used without object)
(of corn) to be in the course of developing silk.
Words nearby silk
Idioms for silk
hit the silk, Slang. to parachute from an aircraft; bail out.
take silk, British. to become a Queen's or King's Counsel.
Origin of silk
before 900; Middle English (noun); Old English sioloc, seol(o)c (cognate with Old Norse silki), by uncertain transmission < Greek sērikón silk, noun use of neuter of sērikós silken, literally, Chinese, derivative of Sêres the Chinese (Russian shëlk, OPruss silkas (genitive) “silk” appear to be < Gmc); cf. seric-
OTHER WORDS FROM silksilk·like, adjectivehalf-silk, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for silking
/ (sɪlk) /
the very fine soft lustrous fibre produced by a silkworm to make its cocoon
- thread or fabric made from this fibre
- (as modifier)a silk dress
a garment made of this
a very fine fibre produced by a spider to build its web, nest, or cocoon
the tuft of long fine styles on an ear of maize
- the gown worn by a Queen's (or King's) Counsel
- informal a Queen's (or King's) Counsel
- take silk to become a Queen's (or King's) Counsel
(intr) US and Canadian (of maize) to develop long hairlike styles
Derived forms of silksilklike, adjective
Word Origin for silk
Old English sioluc; compare Old Norse silki, Greek sērikon, Korean sir; all ultimately from Chinese ssǔ silk
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
Science definitions for silking
[ sĭlk ]
A fiber produced by silkworms to form cocoons. Silk is strong, flexible, and fibrous, and is essentially a long continuous strand of protein. It is widely used to make thread and fabric.
A substance similar to the silk of the silkworm but produced by other insect larvae or by spiders to spin webs.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Idioms and Phrases with silking
see can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear; smooth as silk.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.