snake

noun
\ ˈsnāk How to pronounce snake (audio) \

Definition of snake

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : any of numerous limbless scaled reptiles (suborder Serpentes synonym Ophidia) with a long tapering body and with salivary glands often modified to produce venom which is injected through grooved or tubular fangs
2 : a worthless or treacherous fellow
3 : something (such as a plumber's snake) resembling a snake

snake

verb
snaked; snaking

Definition of snake (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to wind (one's way, one's body in crawling, etc.) in the manner of a snake
2 : to move (something, such as logs) by dragging

intransitive verb

: to crawl, move, or extend silently, secretly, or sinuously

Snake

geographical name
\ ˈsnāk How to pronounce Snake (audio) \

Definition of Snake (Entry 3 of 3)

river 1038 miles (1670 kilometers) long in the northwestern U.S. flowing from northwestern Wyoming across southern Idaho and into the Columbia River in Washington

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Other Words from snake

Noun

snakelike \ ˈsnāk-​ˌlīk How to pronounce snakelike (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for snake

Synonyms: Noun

serpent, viper

Synonyms: Verb

lurk, mooch, mouse, pussyfoot, shirk, skulk, slide, slink, slip, sneak, steal

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Examples of snake in a Sentence

Noun

I thought she was my friend, but she turned out to be a snake in the grass. snakes are cold-blooded, so they regulate their body temperature by alternately basking in sunlight and seeking shade

Verb

The road snakes through the mountains. Cables snaked across the floor. Technicians snaked cables through the set. He snaked his way through the crowd.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

While Castaño suggests a curvy line seen on the menhir refers to the winding route of the nearby Tagus River, archaeologist Primitiva Bueno Ramírez identifies the marking as a snake with a triangular head. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "Drought Reveals Dolmen of Guadalperal, Popularly Dubbed ‘Spanish Stonehenge’," 9 Sep. 2019 Tana went full on Britney Spears and brought a live snake to the event. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Tana Mongeau Brought a Date to the MTV VMAs That’s NOT Jake Paul," 26 Aug. 2019 Up a 40-foot pole, tangled up in a transformer, crews found a big snake. Htv National Desk, Houston Chronicle, "Whoa! Utility crews find 4-foot snake tangled in transformer," 17 Aug. 2019 In Paintsville, Kentucky, where a winding creek snakes through the town of roughly 4,000 people, Value-Med Pharmacy and Medicine Cabinet Pharmacy purchased almost 20 million pills that contained oxycodone and hydrocodone from 2006 through 2012. Anchorage Daily News, "Just 15% of U.S. pharmacies distributed nearly half of prescription opioid pain pills," 12 Aug. 2019 For a snake that can grow to 20 feet and swallow an impala whole, even a large litter of Lycaon pictus pups would barely rate as an amuse-bouche. Natalie Angier, New York Times, "Wild Pups Romp Again in an African Paradise," 3 Aug. 2019 The music is visceral, the high-pitch whir of the lira flutes like a snake worming its way through my earholes and taking hold of my brain stem. National Geographic, "Music in Morocco: The ultimate sonic journey," 23 July 2019 Glue skull to top; wrap and glue snake around lower portion of stick. Woman's Day Staff, Woman's Day, "Wizard Costume," 9 Sep. 2019 The site earned its moniker due to its insanely high density of golden lancehead vipers; some studies report an average of one to five snakes per square meter. Caitlin Morton, Condé Nast Traveler, "Creepy Catacombs, Islands of Dolls, and 18 Other Terrifying Places for Thrill Seekers," 4 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The car pulled into Crown Towers through a special entrance that snaked below the hotel to a bank of underground elevators. Dan Piepenbring, The New Yorker, "The Book of Prince," 2 Sep. 2019 Now in its 49th year, the run starts at the Jerome Historical Museum and snakes through town before continuing on a dirt road past the Gold King Mine and ending at a dramatic viewpoint of Sedona. Roger Naylor, azcentral, "Labor Day weekend 2019: A dozen events worth getting out of Phoenix for," 23 Aug. 2019 The man was confined to a hospital bed, bobbing in and out of consciousness, face beaten beyond recognition, chest rising with breath only due to the ventilator tube snaked down his throat. nola.com, "He died after the family took him off life support; then he walked through the door," 15 June 2019 He was confined to a hospital bed, bobbing in and out of consciousness, face beaten beyond recognition, chest rising with breath only due to the ventilator tube snaked down his throat. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "He died after the family took him off life support. Then he walked through the door.," 14 June 2019 Imagine one with a tie that wraps around your waist so smoothly the tiny hole the belt snakes through never gapes. Elizabeth Wellington, Philly.com, "Watch out DVF, Truth BE Worn is coming for your wrap dress cred | Elizabeth Wellington," 7 June 2018 To be fair, save for Pederson’s leadoff homer, the Dodgers hit hard grounders that snaked into the outfield. Patrick Saunders, The Denver Post, "Rockies’ futility streak reaches nine games with 7-3 loss to Dodgers," 4 Sep. 2019 At a town hall at an elementary school in suburban Henderson last Saturday, the line of people waiting to get inside snaked around the parking lot in 109-degree heat. Casey Tolan, The Mercury News, "How Californians moving to Nevada are changing the state’s politics," 12 Aug. 2019 With his head down, Blagojevich jogged 20 laps Saturday on a dirt path that snakes around a baseball diamond with a mural of Ernie Banks and Nolan Ryan. Brian Cassella, chicagotribune.com, "As clemency from President Trump remains a possibility, disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich goes for a jog," 11 Aug. 2019

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

Noun

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

Verb

1653, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for snake

Noun

Middle English, from Old English snaca; akin to Old Norse snakr snake, Old High German snahhan to crawl

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Statistics for snake

Last Updated

11 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for snake

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

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More Definitions for snake

snake

noun

English Language Learners Definition of snake

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an animal that has a long, thin body and no arms or legs
chiefly US, informal : a bad person who tells lies and betrays other people
: a long thin tool that is used to clear out blocked pipes

snake

verb

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

: to move like a snake : to follow a twisting path with many turns

snake

noun
\ ˈsnāk How to pronounce snake (audio) \

Kids Definition of snake

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a limbless reptile that has a long body with scales and feeds usually on large insects or small animals and birds
2 : a person who is mean or can't be trusted

snake

verb
snaked; snaking

Kids Definition of snake (Entry 2 of 2)

: to crawl, wind, or move like a snake The parade snaked its way along Main Street.

snake

noun
\ ˈsnāk How to pronounce snake (audio) \

Medical Definition of snake

: any of numerous limbless scaled reptiles (suborder Serpentes synonym Ophidia) with a long tapering body and with salivary glands often modified to produce venom which is injected through grooved or tubular fangs

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More from Merriam-Webster on snake

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with snake

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for snake

Spanish Central: Translation of snake

Nglish: Translation of snake for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of snake for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about snake

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