swish

verb
\ˈswish \
swished; swishing; swishes

Definition of swish 

(Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to move, pass, swing, or whirl with the sound of a swish

transitive verb

1 : to move, cut, or strike with a swish the horse swished its tail

2 : to make (a basketball shot) so that the ball falls through the rim without touching it swished a 3-point jumper

swish

noun

Definition of swish (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : a prolonged hissing sound (as of a whip cutting the air)

b : a light sweeping or brushing sound

2 : a swishing movement

3 slang, usually disparaging + offensive : an effeminate homosexual

swish

adjective

Definition of swish (Entry 3 of 3)

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Other Words from swish

Verb

swisher noun
swishingly \ˈswi-shiŋ-lē \ adverb

Synonyms for swish

Synonyms: Verb

switch, wag, waggle

Synonyms: Noun

switch, wag, waggle, whisk

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Examples of swish in a Sentence

Verb

He watched as the windshield wipers swished back and forth. The horse's tail swished back and forth. The horse swished its tail back and forth.

Noun

the steady swish of the windshield wipers the mare brushed away the flies with a sweeping swish of her tail

Adjective

a trendy boutique filled with swish accessories for the urban fashionista
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

James looked away from the hoop as the shot swished through, and Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue reflexively called timeout. Ben Golliver, SI.com, "Kevin Durant's Déjà Vu Dagger Caps the Best Game of His Life," 7 June 2018 The image that sticks is another wide-open shooter swishing another jumper, and Self shaking the palms of his hands on either side of his temples, presumably to keep from punching someone, or himself. Sam Mellinger, kansascity, "After loss to Villanova, the right perspective will take time for Kansas basketball | The Kansas City Star," 31 Mar. 2018 With the shot clock winding down, Oladipo drove on Olynyk, then stepped back and swished a 25-footer to put the Pacers ahead, 106-100, with 1:21 left. Clifton Brown, Indianapolis Star, "3 takeaways as the Pacers clinch a playoff berth," 25 Mar. 2018 Image The research indicates that carb rinsing can enhance performance when fluids are swished around the mouth for five to 10 seconds, the longer the better as more oral receptors come into contact with carbohydrates. New York Times, "That Spitting Thing at the World Cup? It’s Probably ‘Carb Rinsing’," 11 July 2018 Ginobili gave it back, and Horry swished the biggest shot of his Spurs tenure with 5.8 seconds remaining in overtime to produce a 96-95 series-swinging win. Jeff Mcdonald, San Antonio Express-News, "Championship snapshots: The top 10 Finals moments in Spurs history," 2 June 2018 Thompson delivered the ball to Kelan Martin, who swished his fifth 3-pointer. David Woods, Indianapolis Star, "Butler freshman Aaron Thompson poised, productive in NCAA debut," 16 Mar. 2018 And Harden moved deeper into his usual offensive inventory, swishing a rare corner 3. Jonathan Feigen, Houston Chronicle, "James Harden rolls as Rockets bounce back with blowout of the Wizards," 4 Apr. 2018 Duncan Robinson swished another triple, and Poole then scored again. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan basketball reserves save season, end Loyola's title dream," 1 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

After Kyle Korver of the Cavaliers missed an open 3-pointer, Durant spotted up from the top of the arc — swish — for a 114-113 lead. Scott Cacciola, New York Times, "Late Surge Puts Warriors One Step From Postseason Perfection," 8 June 2017 That goes especially for star Johnny Depp, whose Captain Jack Sparrow remains an unchanging and buffoonish blend of swash and swish. Robert W. Butler, kansascity.com, "That sinking feeling: ‘Pirates of the Caribbean 5’," 24 May 2017 Swish swish sounds like it is written by 8 yr old kid or Donald Trump. Gil Kaufman, Billboard, "Watch Katy Perry Finally Explain Taylor Swift Beef, Sing 'Swish, Swish' & More Hits in 'Carpool Karaoke'," 23 May 2017 In a hurricane, those waves can come in quick, short bursts as powerful thunderstorms around the storm’s eye wall swish air up and down like a plunger in a toilet bowl. Jenny Staletovich, miamiherald, "UM researchers find new way to measure hurricanes: ‘gravity waves’," 17 May 2017 The swish was almost inevitable from the area of the court that is his sweet spot. Bill Livingston, cleveland.com, "Kyrie Irving's late burst shows Cleveland Cavaliers' firepower: Bill Livingston (photos, video)," 8 May 2017 The icing on the cake was the little details that matter: the follow through, the curling down of fingers, the backspin, the holding of the follow through — and of course, the swish. Mirin Fader, Orange County Register, "Baker relishes scoring role for Capistrano Valley," 1 Feb. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

This week’s openings Branzino | Rittenhouse Luan Toto’s swish Italian BYOB is back at 261 S. 17th St., two years after a fire. Michael Klein, Philly.com, "Let's Eat: Smile and order lunch," 4 Apr. 2018 At night, a few would wait outside a swish restaurant in my neighborhood. Lane Hartill, The Christian Science Monitor, "A journey from distrust to teammates," 4 Apr. 2018 More: Michigan basketball's miracle win steeped in swag, ended in swishRobinson was on the bench after fouling out against Houston, when Jordan Poole hit a miraculous 3-pointer. Jeff Seidel, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan basketball: Duncan Robinson's defense put to test in Sweet 16," 22 Mar. 2018 Manhattan’s hospitals, with their swish reception desks and menus, can seem like hotels compared with London’s bleached Victorian structures. The Economist, "Which firms profit most from America’s health-care system," 15 Mar. 2018 The Best All-Arounder Surface Laptop (i5, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD), $1,299 This device isn't as swish as the transforming, flexible computers that made the Surface brand famous, but bear with me for a second. Wired Staff, WIRED, "Which Microsoft Surface Should You Buy?," 14 Mar. 2018 Previously, Vidi himself operated Frederick’s, a swish Italian supper club, on the site for two dozen years. Michael Klein, Philly.com, "Kanella South's space is being offered for rent," 28 Feb. 2018 If a toothbrush and toothpaste aren’t readily available, swish and rinse teeth thoroughly with water. Michael Suchar, Philly.com, "3 tips from a dentist to keep Valentine's Day sweet for kids' teeth," 13 Feb. 2018 Other furnishings are equally swish: mock-croc chairs, a slender marble writing desk, and a bathroom so lavishly mosaicked that Hadrian himself would approve. Condé Nast Traveler, "The London West Hollywood," 20 Oct. 2017

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

Verb

1756, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Noun

1820, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

1766, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for swish

Verb

imitative

Adjective

origin unknown

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Learn More about swish

Dictionary Entries near swish

swirl

swirler

swirly

swish

swish cymbal

swishy

Swiss

Statistics for swish

Last Updated

16 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for swish

The first known use of swish was in 1756

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More Definitions for swish

swish

verb

English Language Learners Definition of swish

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to move with or cause (something) to move with a soft sweeping or brushing sound

swish

adjective

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

: fashionable and expensive

swish

verb
\ˈswish \
swished; swishing

Kids Definition of swish

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make, move, or strike with a soft sweeping or brushing sound The horse swished its tail.

swish

noun

Kids Definition of swish (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a soft sweeping or brushing sound

2 : a movement that produces a sweeping or brushing sound

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Comments on swish

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