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

That snake-like shedding is what caused Baby Foot to go viral: large swaths of dead skin hanging from users's feet, revealing fresh, soft skin beneath. Pia Velasco, Good Housekeeping, "Read This Before You Try the 'Baby Foot' Peel Craze," 22 Mar. 2019 Traditionally, that's led to things like snakes on stage and misapprehended awards speeches. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "The Best Hair and Makeup Looks of the 2018 MTV Video Music Awards," 20 Aug. 2018 Reaction to the idea of snake that blends in with concrete has grown steadily as media outlets have carried stories of the photo. Mark Price, charlotteobserver, "A white rattlesnake? Texas park posts photo of ‘cryptic’ viper known for potent bite.," 13 July 2018 Apparently, snakes can be lurking anywhere – even in your swimming pool. Michelle Ewing, ajc, "Copperhead snake bites Alabama girl swimming in pool," 29 June 2018 At Mexico’s El Castillo, among the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza, even more assemble on the same date to see the sun make shadows that look like a snake slithering down the pyramid steps. Jill Gleeson, Country Living, "What Exactly Is the Spring Equinox?," 19 Mar. 2019 A few years ago, someone started an online hate campaign by calling me a snake on the internet. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "8 Celeb Feuds that Will Never, Ever Go Away," 6 Mar. 2019 Other such treatments in history included cigarettes laced with mercury or arsenic, port-wine enemas, the excreta of chameleons and Indian river snakes, and the gastric juices of crows. Adrian Woolfson, WSJ, "‘The Mystery of the Exploding Teeth’ Review: Desperate Remedies," 12 Dec. 2018 And while two-headed snakes are rare, this isn't the first time one has been discovered this year. Araceli Cruz, Teen Vogue, "A Rare Two-Headed Baby Copperhead Snake Was Discovered in Virginia," 24 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Indoors the show-stopping architectural feature is the curved, steel, cantilevered central staircase that snakes upward from the double-height entryway. Ruth Bloomfield, WSJ, "Building a Home Over the Office to Achieve Work-Life Balance," 20 Nov. 2018 Wearers can drink the water while riding or sitting on a chair lift, thanks to a high flow-rate tube and valve system that snakes up next to the zipper to the jacket’s collar for access. Tim Newcomb, Popular Mechanics, "The Winter Jacket That’s Also a Water Bottle," 1 Oct. 2018 Firefighters battled destructive fire Saturday that snaked through a hillside area of Goleta, one of several blazes that destroyed homes during a record-setting heat wave in Southern California. Andrea Castillo And John Wilkens, Anchorage Daily News, "California city devastated by brush fire as record heat burns a path of destruction," 7 July 2018 Firefighters on Saturday were battling a destructive fire that snaked through a hillside area of Goleta, one of several blazes that destroyed homes amid a record-setting heat wave in Southern California. Teri Figueroa, latimes.com, "'I had no idea the flames could go that fast': Goleta devastated by fire as record heat burns path of destruction," 7 July 2018 The cycling portion took riders on a 12.5-mile journey beginning on Witherspoon Street that snaked through some of the city's historic areas and scenic Olmsted parks before looping back to Waterfront Park. Marty Pearl, The Courier-Journal, "Hike, Bike & Paddle 2018 brings impressive crowd to Waterfront Park," 28 May 2018 Doctors do that with an embolization, meaning a catheter is snaked into the blood vessels of the kidney to find the right one and block it. Darlene Superville, BostonGlobe.com, "Melania Trump hospitalized after medical procedure to treat kidney condition," 14 May 2018 Off to his right, His Majesty spots the thin silver line of the Jordan River snaking through lemon groves and cucumber plantations on its way to the Dead Sea. Richard Mcgill Murphy, Town & Country, "Desert Prep," 17 Dec. 2012 Only your wit, your decisions, your thoughts, your opinions, would be allowed to swill, snaking like coils of smoke filling each room, traveling into me, your words replacing mine. Reema Zaman, Vogue, "The Woman I Would Have Been Had I Let Myself Love You," 13 Feb. 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

10 May 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

Comments on snake

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