Whoopsy daisy! Those new fuzzy socks make it easy to skid, or slide unexpectedly, across the wood floor.

Does skid sound Scandinavian? Because that's where etymologists think the word came from. It makes sense, since there's all that ice up there. The Vikings were most likely skidding around way before snow tires and anti-lock brakes came about to stop all the slippery fun. But a skid that gets out of control is never any good — that's why when someone's life slides into the dumps, you can say they "hit the skids."

Definitions of skid

n one of a pair of planks used to make a track for rolling or sliding objects

Type of:
board, plank
a stout length of sawn timber; made in a wide variety of sizes and used for many purposes

n a restraint provided when the brake linings are moved hydraulically against the brake drum to retard the wheel's rotation

brake shoe, shoe
Type of:
constraint, restraint
a device that retards something's motion

n an unexpected slide

sideslip, slip
Type of:
coast, glide, slide
the act of moving smoothly along a surface while remaining in contact with it

v move obliquely or sideways, usually in an uncontrolled manner

“the wheels skidded against the sidewalk”
slew, slide, slip, slue
move forward or under in a sliding motion
slide sideways through the air in a downward direction in an airplane along an inclined lateral axis
Type of:
move smoothly and effortlessly

v slide without control

“the car skidded in the curve on the wet road”
Type of:
slew, slide, slip, slue
move obliquely or sideways, usually in an uncontrolled manner

v apply a brake or skid to

Type of:
cause to stop by applying the brakes

v elevate onto skids

Type of:
bring up, elevate, get up, lift, raise
raise from a lower to a higher position

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.