Dictionary.com

skirmish

[ skur-mish ]
/ ˈskɜr mɪʃ /
Save This Word!

noun

Military. a fight between small bodies of troops, especially advanced or outlying detachments of opposing armies.
any brisk conflict or encounter: She had a skirmish with her landlord about the rent.

verb (used without object)

to engage in a skirmish.

QUIZZES

QUIZ YOURSELF ON "WAS" VS. "WERE"!

Were you ready for a quiz on this topic? Well, here it is! See how well you can differentiate between the uses of "was" vs. "were" in this quiz.
Question 1 of 7
“Was” is used for the indicative past tense of “to be,” and “were” is only used for the subjunctive past tense.

Meet Grammar Coach

Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing

Meet Grammar Coach

Improve Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help

Origin of skirmish

1300–50; (noun) Middle English skirmysshe<Old French eskirmiss-, long stem of eskirmir<Germanic (compare Old High German skirman); replacing Middle English scarmouche<Old French escaramoucher (see Scaramouch); (v.) late Middle English scarmuchen, scarmusshen to skirmish, Middle English skirmisshen to brandish a weapon <Old French escar(a)mucher to skirmish; vowels influenced by Old French eskirmiss-

synonym study for skirmish

1. See battle1.

OTHER WORDS FROM skirmish

skir·mish·er, nounoutskirmish, verb (used with object)

Words nearby skirmish

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for skirmish

British Dictionary definitions for skirmish

skirmish
/ (ˈskɜːmɪʃ) /

noun

a minor short-lived military engagement
any brisk clash or encounter, usually of a minor nature

verb

(intr often foll by with) to engage in a skirmish

Derived forms of skirmish

skirmisher, noun

Word Origin for skirmish

C14: from Old French eskirmir, of Germanic origin; related to Old High German skirmen to defend
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
FEEDBACK