sa·​shay | \ sa-ˈshā also sī- How to pronounce sashay (audio) \
sashayed; sashaying; sashays

Definition of sashay

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to make a chassé
2a : walk, glide, go
b : to strut or move about in an ostentatious or conspicuous manner
c : to proceed or move in a diagonal or sideways manner



Definition of sashay (Entry 2 of 2)

2 : a square-dance figure in which partners sidestep in a circle around each other with the man moving behind the woman
3 : chassé

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Synonyms for sashay

Synonyms: Verb

prance, stalk, strut, swagger

Synonyms: Noun

excursion, jaunt, junket, outing, ramble, sally, sortie, spin

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Did You Know?


The French verb chassé ("to make a sliding dance step") danced into English unaltered in the early 19th century, but as the word gained popularity in America people often had difficulty pronouncing and transcribing its French rhythms. By 1836, sashay had begun to appear in print in American sources. Authors such as Mark Twain, Zora Neale Hurston, and John Updike have all since put their names on the word's dance card and have enjoyed the liveliness and attitude sashay adds to descriptions of movement. They and many, many others have helped sashay slide away from its French dance origins to strut its stuff in descriptions of various walks and moves.

Examples of sashay in a Sentence


The model sashayed down the runway. She sashayed into the room.


just a little weekend sashay we took to get away from it all
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Look at Dancing Queen — sashayed away off one show and walked onto my own. Justin Curto,, "How Drag Star Alyssa Edwards Stays Authentic in Her Projects: 'I've Never Lost Myself'," 1 July 2019 There isn’t a character here — major or minor — who doesn’t sashay resplendently off the page. Richard Lipez, Washington Post, "Looking for a summer thriller? Here are 9 picks for your beach bag.," 20 June 2019 After sashaying away from Atlanta after seasons 1 and 2 of the show took the streaming world by storm, the sensational squad are now making people ugly-cry with their incredible makeovers in Kansas City, Missouri. Alison Caporimo, Seventeen, "Here's Exactly How To Nominate Someone For "Queer Eye"," 28 Mar. 2019 Cox gave us twirls, sashays, hair flips, and dramatic poses up and down the entire length of the runway. Lauren Alexis Fisher, Harper's BAZAAR, "Laverne Cox Just Kicked Off NYFW With the Most Epic Runway Walk," 7 Feb. 2019 No longer would the competition come down to track records or performance, but to the queens who sashayed away earlier this season. Stephen Daw, Billboard, "'RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars 3': Breaking Down How the Eliminated Queens Voted For the Top Two," 16 Mar. 2018 And model Mara Martin was one of these women, sashaying gracefully in her gold bikini, blue headphones shielding her baby from the din of the show. Elisabeth Egan, Glamour, "Motherhood Is Having a Moment—but I'm Not Loving It as Much as You'd Think," 24 July 2018 Apart from being famous for her connection to the Princess of Wales, Kitty is a pretty big deal in the modeling world: She's sashayed down countless runways and appeared in ad campaigns for Dolce & Gabbana, Town& reports. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Princess Charlotte Looks Identical to Princess Diana's Niece Lady Kitty Spencer," 26 Nov. 2018 To say that many of the Ru Paul's Drag Race contestants who've sashayed into our hearts have mindblowing makeup skills would be putting it mildly. Marci Robin, Allure, "Miss Fame of Drag Race Launched a Makeup Collection With Five Must-Have Lipsticks," 30 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Many have seen New York City Ballet’s principal dancer Tiler Peck sashay across the stages of Lincoln Center, Broadway, and beyond. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "Tiler Peck and Roman Mejia Pas de Deux at a Benefit for the New York City Dance Alliance Foundation," 22 Jan. 2019 The sashay is also a square dance figure in which the partners take sideways steps to circle each other. John E. Mcintyre,, "In a word: sashay," 30 Apr. 2018 An existing relationship can take an extra steamy turn this week as Venus makes its final sashay across Leo’s fiery constellation. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What This Week's Horoscope Means for You," 11 Sep. 2017 Then Joanna did the sashay and shante in front of Alexa’s judgmental eye. Geoffrey A. Fowler, WSJ, "Amazon Wants to Judge Your Style, So We Judged Amazon," 2 Aug. 2017 Before the drag queens sashay between booths belting out Whitney Houston, Hamburger Mary’s is, first and foremost, a burger joint. Amy Lombard, Bon Appetit, "The drag queen burger joint that's planning world domination.," 10 July 2017 Widely hailed as the Beyoncé of Japan, Naomi Watanabe does spot-on impressions of Queen Bey down to every last stiletto stomp, sashay, and hair flip. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Watch the “Beyoncé of Japan,” Naomi Watanabe, Apply Her Stage Makeup," 11 July 2017 Ms. Della Femina, even with her devil-may-care sashay, is organized and responsible. Jane Gordon Julien, New York Times, "Of All the Taco Bells in All the Towns ...," 16 Dec. 2016 There’s Sashay up in Seattle to Baby Boom in Salt Lake City. Christa Titus, Billboard, "Jason Rivera on LGBTQ Acceptance In the Hard Rock/Metal Community," 29 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sashay.' 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 sashay


1836, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1900, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sashay


alteration of chassé

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Dictionary Entries near sashay





sash bar

sash cord

sash house

Statistics for sashay

Last Updated

9 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for sashay

The first known use of sashay was in 1836

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More Definitions for sashay



English Language Learners Definition of sashay

: to walk in a slow and confident way that makes people notice you

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More from Merriam-Webster on sashay

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sashay

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sashay

Nglish: Translation of sashay for Spanish Speakers

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