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squinch1

[skwinch]
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noun Architecture.
  1. a small arch, corbeling, or the like, built across the interior angle between two walls, as in a square tower for supporting the side of a superimposed octagonal spire.
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Origin of squinch1

1490–1500; variant of scunch, short for scuncheon, Middle English sconch(e)on < Middle French escoinson, esconchon; see sconcheon

squinch2

[skwinch]
verb (used with object)
  1. to contort (the features) or squint.
  2. to squeeze together or contract.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to squeeze together or crouch down, as to fit into a smaller space.
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Origin of squinch2

1830–40; origin uncertain; cf. squint
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for squinch

Historical Examples

  • Business was business with Mr. Squinch, and social calls should be discouraged.

    Young Wallingford

    George Randolph Chester

  • “Suppose that we say twenty-five hundred,” resumed Mr. Squinch.

    Young Wallingford

    George Randolph Chester

  • Mr. Turner, Mr. Squinch and Mr. Fester looked at one another in turn.

    Young Wallingford

    George Randolph Chester

  • To him Mr. Squinch made his first observation, and it was almost with a snarl.

    Young Wallingford

    George Randolph Chester

  • After thet, hit got so't every time they heerd a squinch owl holler, they'd begin a-shootin' into the bresh with their rifle guns.

    The Gold Girl

    James B. Hendryx


British Dictionary definitions for squinch

squinch

noun
  1. a small arch, corbelling, etc, across an internal corner of a tower, used to support a superstructure such as a spireAlso called: squinch arch
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Word Origin

C15: from obsolete scunch, from Middle English sconcheon, from Old French escoinson, from es- ex- 1 + coin corner
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 squinch

v.

1840, of faces. Related: Squinched; squinching.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper