Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

shriek

play
verb \ˈshrēk, especially Southern ˈsrēk\

Simple Definition of shriek

  • : to make a loud, high-pitched cry

  • : to say (something) in a loud, high-pitched voice

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of shriek

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 :  to utter a sharp shrill sound

  3. 2a :  to cry out in a high-pitched voice :  screechb :  to suggest such a cry (as by vividness of expression) <neon colors shrieked for attention — Calvin Tomkins>

  4. transitive verb
  5. 1 :  to utter with a shriek <shriek an alarm>

  6. 2 :  to express in a manner suggestive of a shriek

Examples of shriek in a sentence

  1. The birds were shrieking in the trees.

  2. She shrieked when she saw a mouse.



Origin and Etymology of shriek

Middle English shreken, probably irregular from shriken to shriek; akin to Old Norse skrækja to shriek


First Known Use: 15th century


2

shriek

noun

Simple Definition of shriek

  • : a loud, high-pitched cry or sound

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of shriek

  1. 1 :  a shrill usually wild or involuntary cry

  2. 2 :  a sound resembling a shriek <the shriek of chalk on the blackboard>

Examples of shriek in a sentence

  1. the shriek of the train's brakes



1567

First Known Use of shriek

1567


SHRIEK Defined for Kids

1

shriek

play
verb \ˈshrēk\

Definition of shriek for Students

shrieked

shrieking

  1. 1 :  to make a loud high-pitched cry <We shrieked with delight.>

  2. 2 :  to say in a loud high-pitched voice <She shrieked my name.>




2

shriek

play
noun

Definition of shriek for Students

  1. :  a loud high-pitched cry or sound





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up shriek? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a simplified speech bridging languages

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

confounded-person

Which is a synonym of indolent?

frenetic lazy melancholy philistine
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ