verb (used without object), squibbed, squib·bing.

verb (used with object), squibbed, squib·bing.

to assail in squibs or lampoons.
to toss, shoot, or utilize as a squib.

Origin of squib

First recorded in 1515–25; origin uncertain
Related formssquib·bish, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for squib

Historical Examples of squib

British Dictionary definitions for squib



a firework, usually having a tube filled with gunpowder, that burns with a hissing noise and culminates in a small explosion
a firework that does not explode because of a fault; dud
a short witty attack; lampoon
an electric device for firing a rocket engine
obsolete an insignificant person
Australian and NZ slang a coward
damp squib something intended but failing to impress

verb squibs, squibbing or squibbed

(intr) to sound, move, or explode like a squib
(intr) to let off or shoot a squib
to write a squib against (someone)
(intr) to move in a quick irregular fashion
(intr) Australian slang to behave in a cowardly fashion

Word Origin for squib

C16: probably imitative of a quick light explosion
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 squib

1520s, "short bit of sarcastic writing, witty scoff," of unknown origin. If the meaning "small firework that burns with a hissing noise" is the original one, the word might be imitative.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper