Dictionary.com

squiz

[ skwiz ]
/ skwɪz /
Australian Informal.
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verb (used with object), squizzed, squiz·zing.

to peer at quickly and closely.

noun

a quick, close look.

QUIZZES

THINK YOU’VE GOT A HANDLE ON THIS US STATE NICKNAME QUIZ?

Did you ever collect all those state quarters? Put them to good use on this quiz about curious state monikers and the facts around them.
Question 1 of 8
Mississippi’s nickname comes from the magnificent trees that grow there. What is it?

Origin of squiz

First recorded in 1905–10; expressive formation, perhaps blend of squint and quiz
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

VOCAB BUILDER

What does squiz mean?

A squiz is a short, close look at something. It can also be used as a verb meaning to take such a look.

Squiz is Australian and New Zealand slang. It is most commonly used as a noun, especially in phrases like have a squiz and give (something) a squiz.

Example: Give this room a squiz to see if you can find my car keys.

Where does squiz come from?

Squiz has been used since at least the early 1900s. It may have originated as a blend of the words squint and quiz, perhaps implying that the look being taken should be a close inspection.

Similar terms in American English are take a peek and take/have a gander, but these don’t quite match the quickness or haste that squiz implies. Squiz can refer to any quick look at something, but it is often used when one must inspect something that’s slightly off or not quite right, such as by being crooked or out of line. In such cases, you need to look closely, but do it quick, as in Have a squiz at my tie, will you? I think I tied it wrong.  

Before it came to be used in its current sense, squiz was (unrelatedly) sometimes used as a kind of sound effect word representing a squishing noise or machine sound.

Did you know … ?

What are some other forms of squiz?

  • squizzes (plural noun, verb)
  • squizzed (past tense verb)
  • squizzing (continuous tense verb)

What are some words that share a root or word element with squiz?

What are some words that often get used in discussing squiz?

What are some words squiz may be commonly confused with?

How is squiz used in real life?

Squiz is a slang word, and it’s always used informally. It’s rarely used outside of Australia and New Zealand.

 

 

Try using squiz!

Is squiz used correctly in the following sentence?

Come have a squiz at this rug—it seems to need a cleaning.

British Dictionary definitions for squiz

squiz
/ (skwɪz) /

noun plural squizzes

Australian and NZ slang a look or glance, esp an inquisitive one

Word Origin for squiz

C20: perhaps a blend of squint and quiz
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
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