quake

verb
\ ˈkwāk How to pronounce quake (audio) \
quaked; quaking

Definition of quake

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to shake or vibrate usually from shock or instability
2 : to tremble or shudder usually from cold or fear

quake

noun

Definition of quake (Entry 2 of 2)

: an instance of shaking or trembling (as of the earth or moon) especially : earthquake

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for quake

Synonyms: Verb

agitate, bucket, convulse, jerk, jiggle, joggle, jolt, jounce, judder [chiefly British], quiver, shake, shudder, vibrate, wobble (also wabble)

Synonyms: Noun

earthquake, shake, temblor, tremor

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of quake in a Sentence

Verb

She was quaking with rage. The explosion made the whole house quake.

Noun

the quake registered 6.5 on the Richter scale, causing widespread damage
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

High-speed 64th notes were in abundance, and there were also mercurial mood changes, widely spaced mega-chords and quaking, two-note tremolos. Barbara Jepson, WSJ, "A Master of the Virtuosic Miniature in New York," 24 Jan. 2019 Wastewater can trigger the initial earthquakes, but quakes themselves can lead to more quakes. Fox News, "Oklahoma sees more severe earthquakes, fewer overall," 7 July 2018 But that was then—somewhere between his breakout role in 2013’s Short Term 12 and in culture-quaking projects like Selma, Straight Outta Compton, Atlanta, and Get Out. Alessandra Codinha, Vogue, "Lakeith Stanfield Thinks We Should All Probably Take a Break From the Internet," 27 June 2018 The Germans had been quaking in fear just at the sight of Lionel Messi potentially penetrating their defence, so the Bayern Munich man's goal took a huge weight off their shoulders and sent them into euphoria. SI.com, "7 of the Most Euphoric Moments in World Cup History," 31 May 2018 But after joining the 1907 Cubs as the only two teams in National League history to win their first nine series to open a season, the Diamondbacks aren’t quaking in their cleats. Bob Mcmanaman, azcentral, "Diamondbacks overcoming rash of injuries with strong start to season," 30 Apr. 2018 Although Mars is not thought to have tectonic plates like those on Earth that shift and grind against each other, triggering earthquakes, a planet can shake and quake for other reasons. Eva Botkin-kowacki, The Christian Science Monitor, "How NASA's latest mission to Mars might dig up truths about Earth," 7 May 2018 By early 2019, scientists hope InSight’s instruments will be reporting back everything from how often the planet quakes to how warm the soil is, thanks to a probe designed to burrow nearly 20 feet below ground. Trevor Hughes, USA TODAY, "Mars lander launch to send car-sized probe to explore secrets of Red Planet," 4 May 2018 Allow one hour to walk the trail and tour the quaking bog. Post-Tribune, "Community news," 19 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Mexican planning officials developed a building code with strict safety standards after a 1985 quake toppled hundreds of buildings in Mexico City. NBC News, "Mexico City shopping center collapse captured on video," 12 July 2018 According to The Weather Channel, the 4.4 magnitude quake hit about 7 miles north-northeast of Decatur, Tennessee, which is about 55 miles away from Knoxville. Megan Stein, Country Living, "A 4.4 Magnitude Earthquake Just Shocked Everyone in the South," 12 Dec. 2018 Some residents heard rumblings before the quake hit, after which the ground was shaken by quick jolts and a series of violent, jagged waves. Jim Carlton, WSJ, "Magnitude 7.0 Earthquake Rocks Anchorage," 30 Nov. 2018 Roughly an hour before the Ocotillo Wells temblor, a 4.5 magnitude quake hit in the Pacific Ocean, 56 miles west of the Northern California town of Ferndale. Eliott C. Mclaughlin, CNN, "4 earthquakes strike California," 8 May 2018 Earlier on Thursday, the USGS said a magnitude 4.9 quake hit Iran’s southern province of Kerman before dawn. Amir Vahdat And Jon Gambrell, USA TODAY, "8 earthquakes strike along Iran-Iraq border, rattle Baghdad," 11 Jan. 2018 But right now, so little is known about slow slips that scientists aren’t sure how to use them to predict quakes, or even if such a thing is possible. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "An Earthquake Shook Istanbul for 50 Days—And Almost No One Noticed," 12 Feb. 2019 Local researchers are anticipating a more-likely 6.7 quake, enough to kill 1,600 people if unreinforced brick buildings tumble. Mike Lindblom, The Seattle Times, "What will the Highway 99 tunnel opening mean for bus routes, detours and tsunamis? We answer those questions and more," 12 Dec. 2018 Releasing a thriller that has already premiered in another country to the kind of rapturous reviews that cause a minor cultural quake (and garners ratings to rival the World Cup) is an even trickier endeavor. Chloe Schama, Vogue, "Bodyguard Is the Best Political Thriller Since Homeland," 24 Oct. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of quake

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for quake

Verb

Middle English, from Old English cwacian

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about quake

Dictionary Entries near quake

quaint

quaintish

quait

quake

quake grass

quake ooze

quakeproof

Statistics for quake

Last Updated

24 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for quake

The first known use of quake was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for quake

quake

verb

English Language Learners Definition of quake

: to shake because of fear, anger, etc.
: to shake violently

quake

verb
\ ˈkwāk How to pronounce quake (audio) \
quaked; quaking

Kids Definition of quake

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to shake usually from shock or lack of stability The explosion made the house quake.
2 : to tremble or shudder usually from cold or fear Regardless, the guards' faces were stern and hard, and she quaked inside.— Grace Lin, Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

quake

noun

Kids Definition of quake (Entry 2 of 2)

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on quake

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with quake

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for quake

Spanish Central: Translation of quake

Nglish: Translation of quake for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of quake for Arabic Speakers

Comments on quake

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a shady place in a garden or forest

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt-painting-a-young-scholar-and-his-tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!