1

shaft

noun \ ˈshaft \

Definition of shaft

plural shafts play \ˈshaf(t)s, for sense 1b usually ˈshavz\
1 a (1) :the long handle of a spear or similar weapon
(2) :spear, lance
b or plural shaves play \ˈshavz\ :pole; specifically :either of two long pieces of wood between which a horse is hitched to a vehicle
c (1) :an arrow especially for a longbow
(2) :the body or stem of an arrow extending from the nock to the head
2 :a sharply delineated beam of light shining through an opening
3 :something suggestive of the shaft of a spear or arrow especially in long slender cylindrical form: such as
a :the trunk of a tree
b :the cylindrical pillar between the capital and the base
c :the handle of a tool or instrument (such as a golf club)
d :a commonly cylindrical bar used to support rotating pieces or to transmit power or motion by rotation
e :the stem or central axis of a feather
f :the upright member of a cross especially below the arms
g :the cylindrical part of a long bone between the enlarged ends
h :a small architectural column (as at each side of a doorway)
i :a column, obelisk, or other spire-shaped or columnar monument
j :a vertical or inclined opening of uniform and limited cross section made for finding or mining ore, raising water, or ventilating underground workings (as in a cave)
k :the part of a hair that is visible above the surface of the skin — see hair illustration
l :a vertical opening or passage through the floors of a building
4 a :a projectile thrown like a spear or shot like an arrow
b :a scornful, satirical, or pithily critical remark or attack
c :harsh or unfair treatment usually used with the
  • gave them the shaft

Examples of shaft in a Sentence

  1. the shaft of a spear

  2. the shaft of a golf club

Recent Examples of shaft from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of shaft

Middle English, from Old English sceaft; akin to Old High German scaft shaft, Latin scapus shaft, stalk, Greek skēptesthai to prop oneself, lean

shaft Synonyms

Synonyms
beam, ray
Antonyms
equitableness, equity, fairness, justice
Related Words
moonbeam, sunbeam, sunburst; laser, spotlight
Near Antonyms
cricket

Other Seed Plant Terms


2

shaft

verb

Definition of shaft

transitive verb
1 :to fit with a shaft
2 :to treat unfairly or harshly

Examples of shaft in a Sentence

  1. You really got shafted in that deal.

Recent Examples of shaft from the Web

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

First Known Use of shaft

1611



SHAFT Defined for English Language Learners

shaft

noun

Definition of shaft for English Language Learners

  • : the long, narrow part of a weapon, tool, instrument, etc.

  • : a bar in a machine which holds or turns other parts that move or spin

  • : one of two poles between which a horse is tied to pull a vehicle (such as a carriage)


shaft

verb

Definition of shaft for English Language Learners

  • : to treat (someone) unfairly or harshly


SHAFT Defined for Kids

shaft

noun \ ˈshaft \

Definition of shaft for Students

1 :the long handle of a weapon, tool, or instrument
  • the shaft of a spear
  • the shaft of a golf club
2 :one of two poles between which a horse is hitched to pull a wagon or carriage
3 :an arrow or its narrow stem
4 :a narrow beam of light
5 :a long narrow part or structure especially when round
  • the shaft of a feather
6 :a mine opening made for finding or mining ore
7 :an opening or passage straight down through the floors of a building
  • an air shaft
  • an elevator shaft
8 :a bar to support rotating pieces of machinery or to give them motion

Medical Dictionary

shaft

noun \ ˈshaft \

medical Definition of shaft

plural shafts play \ˈshaf(t)s\
:a long slender cylindrical body or part: as
a :the cylindrical part of a long bone between the enlarged ends


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to conform or adhere

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