\ ˈskwib How to pronounce squib (audio) \

Definition of squib

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a short humorous or satiric writing or speech
b : a short news item especially : filler
2a : a small firecracker
b : a broken firecracker in which the powder burns with a fizz
3 : a small electric or pyrotechnic device used to ignite a charge


squibbed; squibbing

Definition of squib (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to speak, write, or publish squibs
2 : to fire a squib

transitive verb

1a : to utter in an offhand manner
b : to make squibs against : lampoon
2 : to shoot off : fire
3 : to kick (a football) on a kickoff so that it bounces along the ground

Examples of squib in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Michael Wursthorn Friday's jobs report proved a damp squib to many analysts. WSJ, "U.S. Adds 164,000 Jobs in July, in Line With Expectations," 2 Aug. 2019 The game, then, could have been something of a damp squib, with a point effectively suiting both sides. SI.com, "Women's World Cup Roundup: Germany Thrash South Africa & France Win in Controversial Fashion," 17 June 2019 Sweden Win the Group, the Favourites Flop & England Play out a Bore Draw After the Argentina game, the Three Lions' final group match against Nigeria in Osaka was something of a damp squib. SI.com, "World Cup Countdown: 4 Weeks to Go - England Survive 'Group of Death' While Favourites Fail," 27 May 2018 There are also signs the election will be a damp squib. The Economist, "The uncertain promise of local elections in the birthplace of the Arab spring," 3 May 2018 The effect was to turn a slight and charming little squib into a showpiece. John Von Rhein, chicagotribune.com, "CSO delivers a winning Ravel program under debut conductor Pintscher," 6 Apr. 2018 Even if repatriation is a damp squib, however, America can expect capital inflows in 2018. The Economist, "Capital is on its way to America, but for bad reasons," 1 Mar. 2018 Even a call for a general strike by Catalonian labor unions was a damp squib, with public- and private-sector workers alike mainly turning up for work as usual. Geoffrey Smith, Fortune, "Catalonia's Leader Flees to Brussels As His Party Fights on for Independence," 30 Oct. 2017 Despite all the chitchat, TV viewership was a bit of a damp squib: Ratings were around the same as last year’s all-time low in total viewers. Lara O’reilly, WSJ, "CMO Today: Uber Sues Fetch; NBC Ratings Gains, Uneasy Talent; Stella Artois Super Bowl Ad," 19 Sep. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But Purdue was assessed a personal foul after squibbing the ensuing kickoff to midfield, and runs of 21 and 14 yards by Sargent gave the Hawkeyes the cushion. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Illinois stuns No. 6 Badgers 24-23 on McCourt game-ending FG," 19 Oct. 2019 Sure enough, Gregorius squibbed an infield single in his first at-bat before lifting his homer into the second deck in right field. baltimoresun.com, "Didi Gregorius breaks out of slump as Yankees pummel Twins for 2-0 series lead," 6 Oct. 2019 The Lions were concerned about the dangerous return man, so after the Lions took a 14-7 lead on their second possession, kicker Matt Prater squibbed the kickoff — hard. Brad Biggs, chicagotribune.com, "Brad Biggs’ 10 thoughts on the Bears’ 24-20 win over the Lions," 28 Nov. 2019 Keystone rallied with a short TD run by Shackelford in the final minute, but its onside kick attempt squibbed down to Clyde running back Gunner Golden — who had his hands on the football much of the night — at the 35-yard line to seal the outcome. Matt Goul, cleveland, "Top-seeded Keystone falls to Clyde, 28-20, in D-IV, Region 14 football playoffs," 10 Nov. 2019 The Irish didn’t attempt an onside kick as the Bulldogs were expecting, but squibbed a kick instead and dropped D’Andre Swift inside the 25. Tim Brown, oregonlive, "Georgia Bulldogs edge Notre Dame, 23-17: Live updates recap, stats and more," 21 Sep. 2019

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


circa 1525, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


circa 1580, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for squib


origin unknown

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Time Traveler for squib

Time Traveler

The first known use of squib was circa 1525

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Cite this Entry

“Squib.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/squib. Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for squib


How to pronounce squib (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of squib

: a small firecracker

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More from Merriam-Webster on squib

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for squib

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with squib

Britannica English: Translation of squib for Arabic Speakers

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