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  • IPA(key): /skɪŋk/
    • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɪŋk

Etymology 1[edit]

Possibly from Middle Low German schink, schinke, schenke (leg; shank; shin bone; ham), from Old Saxon skinka, from Proto-West Germanic *skinkō (shank; thigh; that which is bent), from Proto-Germanic *skinkô, from Proto-Indo-European *(s)keng- (to limp; to be crooked, slant).

The word is cognate with Danish skinke (ham), Middle Dutch schenke, schinke (shin; hough; ham), Icelandic skinka (ham), Norwegian skinke (ham), Old English ġesċincio, ġesċinco (kidney fat), Old High German skinka, skinko (shank; shin bone) (Middle High German schinke (shank; shin bone; ham), modern German Schinken (ham; pork from the hindquarters)), Old Saxon skinka (ham), Old Swedish skinke (modern Swedish skinka (ham)).[1]


skink (plural skinks)

  1. (Scotland, Northern England) A shin of beef.
    lean sirloin, skink and pot-roast
  2. (chiefly Scotland, obsolete) A soup or pottage made from a boiled shin of beef.
    • 1623, Francis Bacon, Historia Vitae et Mortis
      For there are in the Flesh , Bones , Skinnes , organs , and the severall limbes of the living body : such spirits as are in the Flesh , Bone , and Skinke , beeing separated
  3. (chiefly Scotland, by extension) Usually preceded by a descriptive word: a soup or pottage made using other ingredients.
Derived terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

From Middle French scinc, from Latin scincus, from Ancient Greek σκίγγος (skíngos), σκίγκος (skínkos).

A skink among flowers in South Africa


skink (plural skinks)

  1. A lizard of the family Scincidae, having small or reduced limbs or none at all and long tails that are regenerated when shed; a sandfish.

Derived terms[edit]

Etymology 3[edit]

From Middle English skinken, skynken, skenken, from Middle Dutch scinken, scenken, schenken and/or Old Norse skenkja, both from Proto-Germanic *skankijaną. Cognate with German schenken (to give as a present), Dutch schenken (to pour, give as a present). See also the inherited doublet shink.


skink (third-person singular simple present skinks, present participle skinking, simple past and past participle skinked)

  1. (transitive, Scotland) To serve (a drink).
    • 1640, James Shirley, The Imposture
      Such wine as Ganymede doth skink to Jove.
  2. (transitive, Scotland, Northern England, obsolete) To give as a present.


skink (plural skinks)

  1. (obsolete) A drink.


  1. ^ skink, n.2”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, September 2009.

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for “skink” in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)




Borrowed from English skink, from Middle French scinc, from Latin scincus, from Ancient Greek σκίγγος (skíngos), σκίγκος (skínkos).



skink m (plural skinken, diminutive skinkje n)

  1. A skink, any lizard of the family Scincidae