criss·​cross | \ ˈkris-ˌkrȯs How to pronounce crisscross (audio) \
crisscrossed; crisscrossing; crisscrosses

Definition of crisscross

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to mark with intersecting lines
2 : to pass back and forth through or over

intransitive verb

1 : to go or pass back and forth



Definition of crisscross (Entry 2 of 3)

: marked or characterized by crisscrossing



Definition of crisscross (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a crisscross pattern : network
2 : the state of being at cross-purposes also : a confused state

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Other Words from crisscross


crisscross adverb

Examples of crisscross in a Sentence


Several highways crisscross the state. shoelaces that crisscross over the top of the shoe Tourists crisscrossed the lake from morning until night. Scientists have been crisscrossing the country to collect data.


She pointed toward the crisscross of trees that had fallen on the path.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The juxtaposition of Ramy’s story with the larger international tale crisscrosses the confessional-personal with the twisty-political. Darren Franich,, "Emmys 2019: Consider Ramy Youssef for writing, directing, and starring in Ramy," 13 June 2019 In the air, the legs make beats, circles or crisscrosses that match some rapid figure in the strings. Alastair Macaulay, New York Times, "Review: Royal Danes Deliver Fresh Shots of Bournonville," 21 June 2018 Commingled with a huge Afghan refugee population, repeatedly displaced by fighting and constantly crisscrossing the Afghan border, Pashtuns have often been stereotyped as criminals, insurgents and tribal terrorists. Pamela Constable And Haq Nawaz Khan, Washington Post, "In Pakistan, a young Pashtun man was killed by police. Another has risen to lead a movement.," 20 Apr. 2018 Zofia's passions included cooking, baking her Easter Babkas (which looked like sunshine on the table), sewing, crisscross embroidery and knitting. Hartford Courant,, "Zofia Ciurylo," 23 Mar. 2018 The toll bridge, located directly west of The Wharf entertainment venue, opened in June 2000, and allowed motorists to crisscross from the beach cities of Orange Beach and Gulf Shores to the Foley Beach Express. John Sharp,, "In coastal Alabama, a public-private clash over bridges to beaches," 8 Apr. 2018 Be sure to crisscross bobby pins for a secure hold. Seventeen Magazine, Seventeen, "Recreate Carey Mulligan's MET Gala Look!," 8 May 2012 Both John Young — who tried sleeping without his liquid cooling garment one night — and Charlie Duke slept well in their crisscrossing hammocks. Roger Simmons, The Seattle Times, "Apollo 11 astronauts were sleepless in the Sea of Tranquility on moon," 12 Apr. 2019 The continent was crisscrossed with transcontinental roads and trails that connected indigenous communities between what is now called Canada and the more southern landscapes from which this current 2018 migration began. Robert Sullivan, Vogue, "What If There Were No Borders?," 30 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Circular patterns of bolts, typically the lug nuts on wheels, should be tightened not in a circle, but in a crisscross or starfish pattern. 2. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "How to Use a Torque Wrench to Keep Your Car from Flying Apart," 26 Feb. 2019 Instead of having a bar across the top like most classic aviator styles, these Jessica Simpson frames feature a crisscross detail between the lenses. Amanda Greene, Woman's Day, "Sunglasses for Every Face Shape," 9 July 2010 Brush over top of cake, then use a fork to score a crisscross pattern into the dough. Melissa Clark, The Seattle Times, "This French plum tart is a bit on the shy side," 11 Sep. 2018 When stacking, use a crisscross pattern to make pillars at each end for stability. Roy Berendsohn, Popular Mechanics, "The Right Way to Stack Firewood," 28 Sep. 2018 One sported a crisscross over the face, and evoked Princess Amidala from Star Wars. Thomas Adamson, The Seattle Times, "Starry Saint Laurent show in Paris sees models walk on water," 25 Sep. 2018 Score the fruit in a crisscross pattern through to the skin. Linda Gassenheimer, sacbee, "Making a chicken mango salad? Soon you will get the tang of it," 10 July 2018 Flatten again in opposite direction, forming crisscross marks. Cassie Armstrong,, "Peanut Butter Cookie Day: How to observe in Central Florida," 12 June 2018 The ceiling is tall enough to include a dining mezzanine on one side, and the crisscross of round filament lights above the rows of blond wood tables helps to reinforce the bright, modern effect. Michael Bauer, San Francisco Chronicle, "Wursthall in San Mateo at its best with beer & brat," 18 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crisscross.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of crisscross


1818, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1840, in the meaning defined above


1833, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for crisscross


obsolete christcross, crisscross mark of a cross

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Statistics for crisscross

Last Updated

17 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for crisscross

The first known use of crisscross was in 1818

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More Definitions for crisscross



English Language Learners Definition of crisscross

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to form a pattern on (something) with lines that cross each other
: to go from one side of (something) to the other side and come back again



English Language Learners Definition of crisscross (Entry 2 of 2)

: a pattern that is formed by lines crossing each other


criss·​cross | \ ˈkris-ˌkrȯs How to pronounce crisscross (audio) \
crisscrossed; crisscrossing

Kids Definition of crisscross

1 : to go, pass, or extend back and forth or cover with something that extends back and forth On our trip we crisscrossed the state.
2 : to mark with or make lines that go across one another

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More from Merriam-Webster on crisscross

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with crisscross

Spanish Central: Translation of crisscross

Nglish: Translation of crisscross for Spanish Speakers

Comments on crisscross

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


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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