whis·​ker | \ ˈ(h)wi-skər How to pronounce whisker (audio) \

Definition of whisker

1a : a hair of the beard
b whiskers plural
(1) archaic : mustache
(2) : the part of the beard growing on the sides of the face or on the chin
c : hairbreadth lost the race by a whisker
2 : one of the long projecting hairs or bristles growing near the mouth of an animal (such as a cat or bird)
3 : an outrigger extending on each side of the bowsprit to spread the jib and flying jib guys usually used in plural
4a : a shred or filament resembling a whisker
b : a thin hairlike crystal (as of sapphire or copper) of exceptional mechanical strength used especially to reinforce composite structural material

Other Words from whisker

whiskered \ ˈ(h)wi-​skərd How to pronounce whisker (audio) \ adjective
whiskery \ ˈ(h)wi-​sk(ə-​)rē How to pronounce whisker (audio) \ adjective

Examples of whisker in a Sentence

He won the race by a whisker.
Recent Examples on the Web Even the old-fashioned The Lost City is a whisker away from $100 million in domestic box office, and that’s not supposed to happen anymore, at least for a comedic romp that is neither a franchise nor a superhero movie. Kim Masters, The Hollywood Reporter, 25 May 2022 Both at some point come within a whisker of catastrophe. John Domini, Los Angeles Times, 27 Apr. 2022 Now, Evers did win the Wisconsin governorship in 2018 by a whisker because a statewide race is comparatively immune to gerrymandering. Ryan Cooper, The Week, 11 Jan. 2022 Playing under 2020's ground rules, Trump came within a whisker's hair of winning an Electoral College victory again — and probably would have if the COVID-19 pandemic had not dramatically altered the course of the campaign. Joel Mathis, The Week, 7 June 2021 That coincided with a tumble in growth stocks, dragging the Nasdaq index to within a whisker of a bear market, down almost 20% from its November peak. James Mackintosh, WSJ, 1 Feb. 2022 Cryptocurrencies, too, are rebounding, with Bitcoin up more than 4% to come within a whisker of $38,000. Bernhard Warner, Fortune, 26 Jan. 2022 The new poll mirrors in several ways a survey commissioned by the AJC in September, which gave Reed a whisker of a lead over Moore that fell within the margin of error. Wilborn P. Nobles Iii, ajc, 22 Oct. 2021 John Kerry would have gone the way of Michael Dukakis, if not Walter Mondale, rather than coming within a whisker in Ohio of winning the White House. W. James Antle Iii, The Week, 14 July 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'whisker.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of whisker

circa 1600, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for whisker

singular of whiskers mustache, from whisk entry 2

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Time Traveler for whisker

Time Traveler

The first known use of whisker was circa 1600

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Dictionary Entries Near whisker

whisk broom



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Statistics for whisker

Last Updated

20 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Whisker.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/whisker. Accessed 12 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for whisker


whis·​ker | \ ˈhwi-skər How to pronounce whisker (audio) , ˈwi- \

Kids Definition of whisker

1 whiskers plural : the part of the beard that grows on the sides of the face and on the chin
2 : one hair of the beard
3 : a long bristle or hair growing near the mouth of an animal (as a cat)

More from Merriam-Webster on whisker

Nglish: Translation of whisker for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of whisker for Arabic Speakers


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