- to glide or propel oneself over ice, the ground, etc., on skates.
- to glide or slide smoothly along.
- Slang. to shirk one's duty; loaf.
- (of the tone arm on a record player) to swing toward the spindle while a record is playing.
- to slide (a flat) across the floor of a stage.
- get/put one's skates on, British Informal. to make haste.
- skate on thin ice, to be or place oneself in a risky or delicate situation: Taking a public stand on the question would be skating on thin ice.
Origin of skate1
- any of several rays of the genus Raja, usually having a pointed snout, as R. binoculata (big skate), inhabiting waters along the Pacific coast of the U.S., growing to a length of 8 feet (2.4 meters).
Origin of skate2
- a person; fellow: He's a good skate.
- a contemptible person.
- an inferior, decrepit horse; nag.
Origin of skate3
Examples from the Web for skate
Yeah, he wanted to skate and had never skated before, so I taught him when he was 58.Putin’s Hockey Pal Tells All: Slava Fetisov on ‘Red Army,’ Soviet Nostalgia, and What Drives Putin
October 9, 2014
We'd skate and walk over the Mile Road and skate and walk over the railroad and skate some more.
My sister Edna took one skate and I took the other, and I was so small that I put I it on right over my shoe.
I kissed the skate key four times a day just to have something to do.Mel Brooks Is Always Funny and Often Wise in This 1975 Playboy Interview
February 16, 2014
You can watch Takahashi skate to the same music in the clip below.Japan’s Beloved Deaf Composer is Neither Deaf Nor a Composer
February 13, 2014
After this Tobias advanced, embraced his father, and then rubbed his eyes with the skate's liver.My Double Life
When in town, they skate or walk or visit the riding-school: all good.
"You must throw that skate away," said Florent as he came up.The Fat and the Thin
We live amid surfaces, and the true art of life is to skate well on them.Essays, Second Series
Ralph Waldo Emerson
She learned to skate in three lessons,—and how she did it too!Tony Butler
Charles James Lever
- to glide swiftly on skates
- to slide smoothly over a surface
- skate on thin ice to place oneself in a dangerous or delicate situation
- any large ray of the family Rajidae, of temperate and tropical seas, having flat pectoral fins continuous with the head, two dorsal fins, a short spineless tail, and a long snout
- US slang a person; fellow
Word Origin and History for skate
"type of flat, cartilaginous fish, a kind of ray," mid-14c., from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse skata "skate," Danish skade, Faeroese skøta, of unknown origin.
"ice skate," 1660s, skeates "ice skates," from Dutch schaats (plural schaatsen), a singular mistaken in English for plural, from Middle Dutch schaetse. The word and the custom were brought to England after the Restoration by exiled followers of Charles II who had taken refuge in Holland.
The Dutch word is from Old North French escache "a stilt, trestle," related to Old French eschace "stilt" (French échasse), from Frankish *skakkja "stilt" or a similar Germanic source (cf. Frisian skatja "stilt"), perhaps literally "thing that shakes or moves fast" and related to root of Old English sceacan "to vibrate" (see shake (v.)). Or perhaps [Klein] the Dutch word is connected to Middle Low German schenke, Old English scanca "leg" (see shank). Sense alteration in Dutch from "stilt" to "skate" is not clearly traced. Sense in English extended to roller-skates by 1876. Meaning "an act of skating" is from 1853.
1690s, "to ice-skate," from skate (n.2). U.S. slang sense of "to get away with something" is attested from 1945. Related: Skated; skating.
Idioms and Phrases with skate
In addition to the idiom beginning with skate
- skate over
- cheap skate
- on thin ice, skate