Your shoulders are at the very top of your arms, where they meet your neck. When you shrug your shoulders, you lift them to convey indifference or the fact that you don't know the answer.

Human shoulders are versatile ball-and-socket joints that are flexible but sturdy enough to allow for lifting heavy objects. Another kind of shoulder is the strip at the side of a road where you can pull your car over in an emergency. This word is also used as a verb, for literally or figuratively carrying heavy burdens: "You shoulder so much responsibility at work — they should give you a raise!" Give someone "the cold shoulder," and you're deliberately being unfriendly to them.

Definitions of shoulder
  1. noun
    a ball-and-socket joint between the head of the humerus and a cavity of the scapula
    synonyms: articulatio humeri, shoulder joint
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    type of:
    articulatio spheroidea, ball-and-socket joint, cotyloid joint, enarthrodial joint, enarthrosis, spheroid joint
    a freely moving joint in which a sphere on the head of one bone fits into a rounded cavity in the other bone
  2. noun
    the part of the body between the neck and the upper arm
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    type of:
    body part
    any part of an organism such as an organ or extremity
  3. noun
    a cut of meat including the upper joint of the foreleg
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    type of:
    cut, cut of meat
    a piece of meat that has been cut from an animal carcass
  4. noun
    the part of a garment that covers or fits over the shoulder
    “an ornamental gold braid on the shoulder of his uniform”
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    type of:
    cloth covering
    a covering made of cloth
  5. noun
    a narrow edge of land (usually unpaved) along the side of a road
    “the car pulled off onto the shoulder
    synonyms: berm
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    hard shoulder
    a paved strip beside a motorway (for stopping in emergencies)
    type of:
    the outside limit of an object or area or surface; a place farthest away from the center of something
  6. verb
    lift onto one's shoulders
    see moresee less
    type of:
    bring up, elevate, get up, lift, raise
    raise from a lower to a higher position
  7. verb
    carry a burden, either real or metaphoric
    shoulder the burden”
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    type of:
    carry, transport
    move while supporting, either in a vehicle or in one's hands or on one's body
  8. verb
    push with the shoulders
    “He shouldered his way into the crowd”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    push forcefully
Word Family
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