Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

EXAMPLES FROM THE WEB FOR SKIRMISH

Went with Pierre to the summit of Skirmish Hill, and took angles.

The skirmish lasted about fifteen minutes, the enemy firing from the houses.

I cut him nigh to the saddle-bow in a skirmish on the eve of Dunbar.

But after a skirmish or two, what with the roads and what with the enemy, our horses were foundered and useless.

Have you forgot the skirmish on the Rhine bank, when you did flash your snapphahn at me?

Rademacher had been buried immediately after the skirmish with all honors.

The time for Border feud and skirmish was already well-nigh past.

The expenditure of ammunition during this skirmish was great.

There ensued a skirmish approaching in dignity to an engagement.

He who is not faithful in a skirmish would not be faithful in an Armageddon.

WORD ORIGIN

late 14c., from Old French escarmouche "skirmish," from Italian scaramuccia, earlier schermugio, probably from a Germanic source (cf. Old High German skirmen "to protect, defend"), with a diminutive or depreciatory suffix, from Proto-Germanic *skerm-, from PIE *(s)ker- (1) "to cut" (see shear).

Influenced in Middle English by a separate verb skirmysshen "to brandish a weapon," from Old French eskirmiss-, stem of eskirmir "to fence," from Frankish *skirmjan, from the same Germanic source. Cf. also scrimmage. Other modern Germanic forms have an additional diminutive affix: German scharmützel, Dutch schermutseling, Danish skjærmydsel. Skirmish-line attested by 1864.

MORE RELATED WORDS FOR SKIRMISH

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.