whis·key | \ˈhwi-skē, ˈwi-\
variants: or whisky
plural whiskeys or whiskies

Definition of whiskey 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a liquor distilled from fermented wort (such as that obtained from rye, corn, or barley mash)

2 : a drink of whiskey


communications code word

Definition of Whiskey (Entry 2 of 2)

used as a code word for the letter w

Examples of whiskey in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The longer one is that as spicy and sour drinks proliferate, and things like pickleback shots (where a shot of whiskey is chased by a shot of pickle juice) become the norm, a pickle beer doesn’t sound so crazy. Gary Dzen, BostonGlobe.com, "Bottles: Pickle beer is here. It was only a matter of time," 9 July 2018 Stanfield: [stylist brings him a shot of whiskey in a glass] Thank you, baby. Bijan Stephen, The Verge, "What’s in your bag, Lakeith Stanfield?," 29 June 2018 The industry is known for its patience, since whiskey takes years to mature. Bruce Schreiner, USA TODAY, "European Union tariffs stir unrest among American whiskey producers," 21 June 2018 English, Scottish, and Irish immigrants who settled the mountain regions of colonial America carried their whiskey-making traditions across the Atlantic. Alan Ashe, CNN, "It's National Moonshine Day. We answer your questions," 7 June 2018 The act required such whiskeys to be at least four years old, bottled at 100 proof, have no additives other than water, and also be the product of one distillery. Craig Laban, Philly.com, "Dad's Hat, bottled in bond, and getting better with age," 25 May 2018 Those exports are linked to more than 850,000 jobs in the state related to farming, steel, baked goods, car manufacturing, whiskey and more. Jonathan Mattise, The Seattle Times, "In Tennessee, Trump’s tariffs become a political issue," 9 July 2018 The European Union is set to slap tariffs on $3.4 billion in American products on Friday, from whiskey and motorcycles to peanuts and cranberries. NBC News, "Trump jabbed first, and now world hits back in trade fight," 22 June 2018 The evening includes a full whiskey bar, dancing and cigar-rolling demonstrations. 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday, June 16. 777 Harrah’s Rincon Way, Valley Center. Carolina Gusman, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Skip the tie: 45 Father's Day dining specials in San Diego County," 9 June 2018

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


1715, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Communications code word

1952, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for whiskey


Irish uisce beatha & Scottish Gaelic uisge beatha, literally, water of life

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Statistics for whiskey

Last Updated

2 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for whiskey

The first known use of whiskey was in 1715

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More Definitions for whiskey



English Language Learners Definition of whiskey

: a strong alcoholic drink made from a grain (such as rye, corn, or barley)


variants: or whisky \ˈhwi-skē, ˈwi- \
plural whiskeys or whiskies

Kids Definition of whiskey

: a strong alcoholic drink usually made from grain (as of rye or barley)


variants: or whisky \ˈhwis-kē, ˈwis- \
plural whiskeys or whiskies

Medical Definition of whiskey 

: a liquor that is distilled from the fermented mash of grain (as rye, corn, or barley) and was formerly used medicinally as a sedative and vasodilator

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Comments on whiskey

What made you want to look up whiskey? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


not any or not one

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