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

Apparently this was planned before the whiskey-and-weed bull session on The Joe Rogan Experience. Elizabeth Lopatto, The Verge, "Why so many people think Elon Musk is a hero — or a villain," 30 Nov. 2018 In 2010, Welter, a Valparaiso native now living in Three Oaks, purchased an 1800s factory with the intent of opening up a whiskey distillery. Amy Lavalley, Post-Tribune, "Michigan distillery's wastewater hurdles, growth on minds as plans in Valparaiso continue," 13 July 2018 Discover the Argyll Peninsula and four islands of western Scotland on a six-night tour that includes daily guided hikes linking prehistoric sites, nature reserves and whiskey distilleries. Anne Harnagel, latimes.com, "Enjoy walking and whiskey on Scotland’s Argyll Peninsula and four small islands," 30 Apr. 2018 Columbus was about four whiskeys deep at this point. Karan Mahajan, The New Republic, "After the Strongman," 26 Mar. 2018 The group paused only for a shot of whiskey between each song and a couple of smoke breaks. Lainna Fader, Newsweek, "Khun Narin's Electric Phin Band: The Psychedelic Rock Band Discovered in a Remote Village in Thailand," 26 Aug. 2014 Representatives of the bloc’s governments agreed to impose a 25 percent duty on 2.8 billion euros ($3.3 billion) of EU imports of a range of U.S. products including Harley-Davidson Inc. motorcycles, Levi Strauss & Co. jeans and bourbon whiskey. Jonathan Stearns, Bloomberg.com, "EU's Juncker Says Trump Called Him a ‘Brutal Killer’ at G-7," 14 June 2018 The list includes motorcycles, blue jeans and bourbon whiskey. Andrew Mayeda And Bryce Baschuk / Bloomberg, Time, "What Is a Trade War? Why Economists Are Worried," 24 Mar. 2018 The whiskey was first available at all Spec's stores and, according to Horan, is now sold in nearly 30 states. Tracy Maness, Houston Chronicle, "Mr. Irish: St. Patrick's Day is for all," 12 Mar. 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

15 May 2019

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Time Traveler for whiskey

The first known use of whiskey was in 1715

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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

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


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