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See more synonyms for skewer on Thesaurus.com
  1. a long pin of wood or metal for inserting through meat or other food to hold or bind it in cooking.
  2. any similar pin for fastening or holding an item in place.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to fasten with or as if with a skewer.
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Origin of skewer

First recorded in 1670–80; earlier skiver < ?
Related formsun·skew·ered, adjective
Can be confusedskew skewer
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for skewering

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • There was no fingering of hilts or talk of skewering on either side.

  • Susanne works intently at the heavy coils of her hair, and the gold pins she is skewering through it.


    George Cary Eggleston

  • Mix thoroughly and fill the fish, sewing or skewering the opening together.

    Standard Paper-Bag Cookery

    Emma Paddock Telford

  • Unless he is huge, leave him whole, skewering him flat, and laying him skin side up in the pan.

  • In the figure's hands was a heavy spear and the arm holding it swept aloft preparatory to skewering Tharn on its point.

    The Return of Tharn

    Howard Carleton Browne

British Dictionary definitions for skewering


  1. a long pin for holding meat in position while being cooked, etc
  2. a similar pin having some other function
  3. chess a tactical manoeuvre in which an attacked man is made to move and expose another man to capture
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  1. (tr) to drive a skewer through or fasten with a skewer
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Word Origin

C17: probably from dialect skiver
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 skewering



1670s, variant of dialectal skiver (1660s), perhaps from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse skifa "a cut, slice" (of bread, etc.), Swedish skifer "a slate," which are related to shiver (n.1) "small piece."

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1701, from the noun. Related: Skewered; skewering.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper