Definition of icicle
1 : a pendent mass of ice formed by the freezing of dripping water
2 : an emotionally cold person
3 : a long narrow strip (as of foil) used to decorate a Christmas tree
Examples of icicle in a Sentence
his wife is such an icicle you're lucky to get so much as a greeting from her
Did You Know?
Old English gicel, meaning icicle, became Middle English ikyl or ikel and later modern English ickle, which survives as a dialect word in Yorkshire, England. The word for ice in Old English is is, and in a manuscript of about the year 1000 we find Latin stiria, “icicle,” glossed, somewhat redundantly, as ises gicel, that is, “an icicle of ice.” Some 300 years later, in Middle English, this became the compound known today as icicle, which means precisely what it did 1000 years ago.
Origin and Etymology of icicle
Middle English isikel, from is ice + ikel icicle, from Old English gicel; akin to Old High German ihilla icicle, Middle Irish aig ice
First Known Use: 14th century
ICICLE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of icicle for English Language Learners
: a hanging piece of ice formed when water freezes as it drips down from something (such as a roof)
ICICLE Defined for Kids
Definition of icicle for Students
: a hanging piece of ice formed from dripping water as it freezes
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up icicle? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).