shred

noun
\ˈshred, especially Southern ˈsred\

Definition of shred 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a long narrow strip cut or torn off

b shreds plural : a shredded, damaged, or ruined condition a reputation torn to shreds

2 : particle, scrap not a shred of evidence

shred

verb
shredded; shredding

Definition of shred (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 archaic : to cut off

2 : to cut or tear into shreds shredded the documents

3 : demolish sense 2 sharp lawyers shredding hapless witnesses— Charles Krauthammer

intransitive verb

: to come apart in or break up into shreds

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from shred

Verb

shredder noun

Examples of shred in a Sentence

Noun

The wallpaper is in shreds. His reputation was in shreds after the arrest. He struggled to retain a shred of his dignity.

Verb

Shred the cabbage and add it to the salad. shredded some cooked chicken for the soup
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Not a shred of evidence about Trump, Russia collusion. Fox News, "Conway: Denuclearization of North Korea benefits the world," 12 June 2018 There’s not a shred of evidence that these laws work. Katie Zezima, Washington Post, "Federal, state authorities step up fentanyl prosecutions as drug drives spike in overdoses," 7 June 2018 Legacy Records has taken this shred of history and turned it into a fantasy of black American music. New York Times, "Legacy Records Looks for History in a Brand New Neighborhood," 19 June 2018 Even after Jakob Junis keyed a victory over the Yankees in what became yet another lost series, the Royals couldn’t grasp a single shred of momentum. Maria Torres, kansascity, "Royals beat Cardinals in 10 innings, secure first road series victory of season | The Kansas City Star," 23 May 2018 Modern Houston sprawls over the nappy carpet of Texas soil in shreds, bones, nerves, and holes, a charred skeleton with an eye retained here, and there a prosthetic hand still smoking. Molly Glentzer, Houston Chronicle, "How Norman Mailer nailed Houston - and the future of politics," 26 Feb. 2018 But the new numbers out today hold one shred of hope for buyers: The number of homes for sale is finally ticking up. Morning Brief, The Seattle Times, "WSU quarterback Hilinski had CTE; travel ban upheld | Tuesday Morning Brief, June 26," 26 June 2018 Specifically, a few lean toward the precious and parsimonious, like slices of alabaster fluke adorned with tiny maitake mushrooms and shreds of aromatic celery leaf, or hamachi adorned with mint and scarlet slices of plum. Mike Sula, Chicago Reader, "Andersonville’s Passerotto is a tale of two peninsulas," 21 June 2018 Not a great glimmer, but something, some shred of hope that they would be heard eventually. Recode Staff, Recode, "Full transcript: Journalist Ronan Farrow on Recode Decode," 4 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Quarterback Trevor Knight and shredded the Alabama defense on the way to a 45–31 Sooners victory. Will Mccollister, SI.com, "On the Outside Looking In: The Best Teams to Finish No. 3 in the BCS Era," 11 July 2018 The toxicity of the environment shreds the quality of conversation and deters meaningful participation in it. Franklin Foer, The Atlantic, "The Death of the Public Square," 6 July 2018 For protein on your pad Thai, top off the dish with poached shrimp, shredded rotisserie chicken or cubes of tofu. Terri Milligan, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Keep your cool: No-heat cooking keeps you comfortable and the food fresh," 5 July 2018 Mbappé shredded Argentina with two goals to send France into the quarterfinals. Joshua Robinson, WSJ, "The World Cup’s Breakout Star: Kylian Mbappé," 1 July 2018 There’s also shredded lettuce and special creamy mayo sauce with a hint of horseradish. Susan Selasky, Detroit Free Press, "Top 5 burgers to try in metro Detroit this summer," 25 June 2018 Diced little cubes of tangy pickles, shredded lettuce soaked in oil and a dusting of oregano, hot pepper relish — none of that pepper ring nonsense — and mayo. Kara Baskin, BostonGlobe.com, "The best Italian sub around, with mayo and memories," 18 June 2018 The fabric is even softer than the POC shorts, but so far nothing has succeeded in shredding it. Kelly Bastone, Outside Online, "Europeans Know How to Make Women's Mountain Bike Shorts," 29 June 2018 Get up to 5 pounds of free documents shredded for free through April 29 at Office Max and Office Depot with coupon. Leada Gore, AL.com, "Tax Day 2018 freebies, discounts: Best deals on pizza, margaritas, more," 17 Apr. 2018

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

Noun

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

Verb

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

History and Etymology for shred

Noun

Middle English shrede, from Old English scrēade; akin to Old High German scrōt piece cut off

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about shred

Statistics for shred

Last Updated

20 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for shred

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for shred

shred

noun

English Language Learners Definition of shred

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a long, thin piece cut or torn off of something

shreds : a completely ruined condition

: a very small amount of something

shred

verb

English Language Learners Definition of shred (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cut or tear (something) into long, thin pieces

shred

noun
\ˈshred \

Kids Definition of shred

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a long narrow piece torn or cut off : strip shreds of cloth

2 : a small amount : bit There is not a shred of evidence.

shred

verb
shredded; shredding

Kids Definition of shred (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cut or tear into small pieces

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on shred

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to reject or criticize sharply

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
True or False

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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!