\ ˈshēṯẖ How to pronounce sheathe (audio) \
variants: or less commonly sheath \ ˈshēth How to pronounce sheathe (audio) \
sheathed; sheathing

Definition of sheathe

transitive verb

1 : to put into or furnish with a sheath
2 : to plunge or bury (a weapon, such as a sword) in flesh
3 : to withdraw (a claw) into a sheath
4 : to case or cover with something (such as sheets of metal) that protects

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Other Words from sheathe

sheather \ ˈshē-​ṯẖər How to pronounce sheathe (audio) , -​thər \ noun

Synonyms for sheathe


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Examples of sheathe in a Sentence

sometimes shipbuilders sheathe a ship's bottom with copper for extra protection from barnacles and other threats
Recent Examples on the Web Perhaps the biggest statement of all is in the dining room, which the owner reconfigured and sheathed in a vintage wallcovering depicting the monuments of Paris. Ingrid Abramovitch, ELLE Decor, "Tour a Dramatic Hearst Family Estate in New York’s Hudson Valley," 10 Sep. 2019 This searing solo, performed by a dancer sheathed in a tube of purple jersey, is now a classic portrayal of grief. New York Times, "For the Public Library, Martha Graham Is the Missing Link," 11 May 2020 The next day, the girls were back in the blackberry patch, their arms and hands sheathed in black lisle stockings to guard against the thorns, and hats pulled low over their faces to shield the sun. Susan Glaser, cleveland, "Thanks for the memories, Cedar Point: Readers recall their favorite park moments," 3 May 2020 The home is built with dual climate control sheathing for superior weather and climate protection and top-of-the-line Andersen windows and patio doors, said a company spokesperson. Dallas News, "Three-story duplex offers skyline views," 26 Apr. 2020 The supermassive object is surrounded by a swirling disk of million-degree matter and is sheathed by an x-ray corona with a temperature exceeding a billion degrees. National Geographic, "Astronomers just got a deep peek at a black hole," 20 Jan. 2020 One body bore gold bracelets with designs of vipers, a gold triple-strand necklace and a parazonium, a triangular dagger sheathed in seashells, with an ivory hilt. New York Times, "Here Lies the Skull of Pliny the Elder, Maybe," 14 Feb. 2020 In addition, the edges of 727 West Madison’s concrete floor slabs are sheathed in glass rather than aluminum, creating a continuous sculptural look. Blair Kamin,, "A new oval apartment tower breaks out of the box and brightens downtown’s western edge," 12 June 2019 The worn, white house in the west of the city was now penned in by a chain-link fence sheathed in green mesh, and the families who had lived there together for two months were now scattered between Oakland and Berkeley. E. Tammy Kim, The New York Review of Books, "Moms 4 Housing: Redefining the Right to a Home in Oakland," 9 Mar. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sheathe

Middle English shethen, derivative of shethe sheath

Note: Middle English Dictionary cites Old English unscēaþian, but the source for this word is not established.

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Time Traveler for sheathe

Time Traveler

The first known use of sheathe was in the 15th century

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Statistics for sheathe

Last Updated

20 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sheathe.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for sheathe



English Language Learners Definition of sheathe

literary : to put (something, such as a sword) into a sheath
: to cover (something) with something that protects it


\ ˈshēt͟h How to pronounce sheathe (audio) \
sheathed; sheathing

Kids Definition of sheathe

1 : to put into a sheath Sheathe your sword.
2 : to cover with something that protects The ship's bottom is sheathed with copper.

More from Merriam-Webster on sheathe

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sheathe

Nglish: Translation of sheathe for Spanish Speakers

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