whis·​key | \ ˈhwi-skē How to pronounce whiskey (audio) , 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

Lao-lao, a rice whiskey, requires sticky rice to be steamed and washed, then fermented with yeast for a few days. Jill K. Robinson, National Geographic, "Gordon Ramsay Travels the Mighty Mekong of Laos," 7 July 2019 The fire destroyed a warehouse holding roughly 45,000 barrels of young whiskey. Grace Schneider, The Courier-Journal, "Bourbon expert: Jim Beam fire not good for image in industry built on consumer confidence," 3 July 2019 Local bars and restaurants include The Dancing Cat Saloon, a New American eatery with occasional live music and the popular whiskey-enhanced Sinner's Lamb Chops. Laura Kiniry, Smithsonian, "The 15 Best Small Towns to Visit in 2019," 6 June 2019 Years later, the barn became the site of a still and Palm Ridge Reserve’s handmade Florida whiskey was born. A.d. Thompson, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Tavares/Umatilla Neighborhood Guide," 21 June 2018 In a microwave-safe medium bowl, whisk ketchup, brown sugar, lemon juice, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and whiskey. Daniel Higgins, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Burgers with pizzazz: Surf 'n' turf burger judged best in annual BBQ contest," 18 June 2018 The website Dragon-click.com still displays more than 3,400 products ranging from whiskey to clothing and shoes to bicycles, furniture, watches and handbags. David Lyons, Sun-Sentinel.com, "SEC alleges Parkland couple's online shopping business committed stock fraud," 12 June 2018 The straight barley whiskeys are 110 proof and contain sweet, smokey and chocolate notes. Jess Fleming, Twin Cities, "Chef Justin Sutherland gets his own signature whiskey from Tattersall," 18 June 2019 And if dad wants a little whiskey with his skeeball, Kings has its own private label bourbon created with Makers Mark, called Nature’s Mark Private Select. Tanya Edwards, BostonGlobe.com, "Father’s Day done your way," 14 June 2019

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

10 Jul 2019

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-​ How to pronounce whisky (audio) \
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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More from Merriam-Webster on whiskey

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with whiskey

Spanish Central: Translation of whiskey

Nglish: Translation of whiskey for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about whiskey

Comments on whiskey

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food or victuals

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