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Definition of "skirl" [skirl]

  • To produce a high, shrill, wailing tone. Used of bagpipes. (verb-intransitive)
  • To play (a piece) on bagpipes. (verb-transitive)
  • The shrill sound made by the chanter pipe of bagpipes. (noun)
  • A shrill wailing sound: "The skirl of a police whistle split the stillness” ( Sax Rohmer). (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "skirl" in a sentence
  • "The "skirl" of the nighthawk ceases; but away through the woods, down at the creek, the whippoorwill begins her oft-repeated trinity of notes."
  • "He screwed the pipes and gart them skirl,Till roof and rafters a' did dirl."
  • "Alan Donaldson Scottish woodcock, bread sauce and woodcock giblets on toast; When you tell a resident of Edinburgh that there are three one-star Michelin restaurants in the town's old port of Leith, you are usually met with the sort of astonished look reserved for someone who claims to adore the skirl of bagpipes last thing at night, or insists that he craves the Scottish chip-shop delicacy, the battered, deep-fried Mars Bar."