WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2020
shake /ʃeɪk/USA pronunciation   v.,  shook/ʃʊk/USA pronunciation  shak•en/ˈʃeɪkən/USA pronunciation  shak•ing, n. 
  1. to (cause to) move with short, quick movements: [no object]The car shook when the engine started.[+ object]The earthquake shook the house.
  2. Pathology to tremble with emotion, cold, etc.:[no object]His voice shook with rage.
  3. to (cause to) become loose and fall: [+ object]He shook the sand loose from his feet.[+ object + off]She shook her clothes off and climbed into bed.[+ off + object]She shook off her clothes and climbed into bed.[+ off]The sand shook off all through the house.
  4. to move (something, esp. in a container), briskly to and fro or up and down, as in mixing: [+ object]Shake the container of chocolate milk before you pour it.[+ up + object]Shake up the container.[+ object + up]Shake it up well.[no object]Shake well before using.
  5. to take hold of (usually the right hand of another person) as a sign of greeting, friendship, etc.: [+ object]They shook hands and exchanged business cards.[no object]It's a deal; let's shake on it.
  6. to hold (something) in front of another in a threatening way:[+ object]shook her fist at him.
  7. to grasp in an attempt to knock something loose by quick, strong movements:[+ object]to shake the tree to knock apples loose.
  8. to knock (something) loose by quick, strong movements:[+ object]to shake apples from the tree.
  9. to upset or worry (someone) deeply or greatly:[+ object]badly shaken by her death.
  10. to get rid of or away from:[+ object]The spy shook the agents following him.
  11. shake down: 
    • Informal Termsto demand money from, as by blackmail: [+ down + object]He shook down rich politicians.[+ object + down]to shake them down for money.
    • [+ object + down] to search for hidden weapons:to shake the prisoners down for weapons.
  12. shake off: 
    • to get rid of;
      reject: [+ off + object]She can't shake off a feeling of despair.[+ object + off]I can't shake this flu off.
    • to get away from: [+ off + object]The spy shook off the pair of agents following him.[+ object + off]He shook them off and returned home.
  13. shake up: 
    • to trouble or distress;
      upset: [+ object + up]The news of her death shook us up.[+ up + object]The news of her death shook up the town.
    • [+ up + object] to rearrange:The Prime Minister shook up her Cabinet.

  1. an act or instance of rocking or shaking:[countable]a slight shake of the head.
  2. Pathology, Informal Termsshakes, [plural;  often: the + ~] a state or spell of trembling, caused by fear, cold, etc.:a bad case of the shakes.
  3. Informal Termsmilkshake.
  4. handshake (def. 1).
  5. Informal Terms treatment;
    deal:[countable;  usually: singular;+ ~]Everyone gets a fair shake.
  6. Geology[countable][Informal.]an earthquake.
  1. Idiomsno great shakes, common;
    ordinary:an average student, no great shakes.
  2. Idioms, Informal Termsshake a leg, [Informal.]to hurry.

WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2020
ˈshake-ˌup,  n. [countable]
  1. a rearrangement of administration in an organization, as by dismissals.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
shake  (shāk),USA pronunciation v.,  shook, shak•en, shak•ing, n. 
  1. to move or sway with short, quick, irregular vibratory movements.
  2. Pathologyto tremble with emotion, cold, etc.
  3. to become dislodged and fall (usually fol. by off or down):Sand shakes off easily.
  4. to move something, or its support or container, briskly to and fro or up and down, as in mixing:Shake before using.
  5. to totter;
    become unsteady.
  6. to clasp another's hand in greeting, agreement, congratulations, etc.:Let's shake and be friends again.
  7. Music and Danceto execute a trill.

  1. to move (something or its support or container) to and fro or up and down with short, quick, forcible movements:to shake a bottle of milk.
  2. to brandish or flourish:to shake a stick at someone.
  3. to grasp (someone or something) firmly in an attempt to move or rouse by, or as by, vigorous movement to and fro:We shook the tree.
  4. to dislodge or dispense (something) by short, quick, forcible movements of its support or container:We shook nuts from the tree.
  5. to cause to sway, rock, totter, etc.:to shake the very foundations of society.
  6. to agitate or disturb profoundly in feeling:The experience shook him badly.
  7. to cause to doubt or waver;
    weaken. to shake one's self-esteem.
  8. Music and Danceto trill (a note).
  9. Gamesto mix (dice) by rolling in the palm of the hand before they are cast.
  10. to get rid of;
    elude:They tried to shake their pursuers.
  11. Informal Termsshake a leg: 
    • to hurry up;
      get a move on:You'd better shake a leg or we'll miss the first act.
    • to dance.
  12. shake down: 
    • to cause to descend by shaking;
      bring down.
    • to cause to settle.
    • to condition;
      test:to shake down a ship.
    • Informal Termsto extort money from.
    • [Slang.]to search (someone), esp. to detect concealed weapons.
  13. shake hands. See  hand (def. 64).
  14. shake off: 
    • to rid oneself of;
    • to get away from;
      leave behind.
    • Sport[Baseball, Softball.](of a pitcher) to indicate rejection of (a sign by the catcher for a certain pitch) by shaking the head or motioning with the glove.
  15. shake one's head: 
    • to indicate disapproval, disagreement, negation, or uncertainty by turning one's head from one side to the other and back:I asked him if he knew the answer, but he just shook his head.
    • to indicate approval, agreement, affirmation or acceptance by nodding one's head up and down.
  16. shake the dust from one's feet. See  dust (def. 18).
  17. shake up: 
    • to shake in order to mix or loosen.
    • to upset;
    • to agitate mentally or physically:The threat of attack has shaken up the entire country.

  1. an act or instance of shaking, rocking, swaying, etc.
  2. tremulous motion.
  3. a tremor.
  4. Pathology, Informal Termsshakes, (used with a sing. v.)[Informal.]a state or spell of trembling, as caused by fear, fever, cold, etc. (usually prec. by the).
  5. a disturbing blow;
  6. Informal TermsSee  milk shake. 
  7. the act or a manner of clasping another's hand in greeting, agreement, etc.:He has a strong shake.
  8. Informal Termschance or fate;
    deal:a fair shake.
  9. a cast of the dice:He threw an eight on his last shake.
  10. something resulting from shaking.
  11. Geologyan earthquake.
  12. Geologya fissure in the earth.
  13. Buildingan internal crack or fissure in timber.
  14. Music and Dancetrill1 (def. 9).
  15. an instant:I'll be with you in a shake.
  16. Building[Carpentry.]a shingle or clapboard formed by splitting a short log into a number of tapered radial sections with a hatchet.
  17. Time[Horol.](in an escapement) the distance between the nearer corner of one pallet and the nearest tooth of the escape wheel when the other pallet arrests an escape tooth.
  18. Dialect Terms[Chiefly South Midland U.S.]shaker (def. 2).
  19. Music and Dancea dance deriving from the twist.
  20. Slang Termsthe dried leaves of the marijuana plant.
  21. Informal Termsno great shakes, of no particular ability;
    common:As opera companies go, this one is no great shakes.
  22. two shakes or  two shakes of a lamb's tail, a very short time;
    a moment.
shaka•ble, shakea•ble, adj. 
  • bef. 900; (verb, verbal) Middle English s(c)haken, Old English sceacan; cognate with Low German schacken, Old Norse skaka; (noun, nominal) derivative of the verb, verbal
    • 1.See corresponding entry in Unabridged oscillate, waver.
      Shake, quiver, tremble, vibrate refer to an agitated movement that, in living things, is often involuntary. To
      shake is to agitate more or less quickly, abruptly, and often unevenly so as to disturb the poise, stability, or equilibrium of a person or thing:a pole shaking under his weight.To quiver is to exhibit a slight vibratory motion such as that resulting from disturbed or irregular (surface) tension:The surface of the pool quivered in the breeze.To tremble (used more often of a person) is to be agitated by intermittent, involuntary movements of the muscles, much like shivering and caused by fear, cold, weakness, great emotion, etc.:Even stout hearts tremble with dismay.To vibrate is to exhibit a rapid, rhythmical motion:A violin string vibrates when a bow is drawn across it.
    • 2.See corresponding entry in Unabridged shudder, shiver.
    • 14.See corresponding entry in Unabridged daunt.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
shake-up  (shākup′),USA pronunciation n. 
  1. a thorough change in a business, department, or the like, as by dismissals, demotions, etc.
  • noun, nominal use of verb, verbal phrase shake up 1900–05

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
shake up vb (tr, adverb)
  1. to shake or agitate in order to mix
  2. to reorganize drastically
  3. to stir or rouse
  4. to restore the shape of (a pillow, cushion, etc)
  5. informal to disturb or shock mentally or physically
n shake-up
  1. informal a radical or drastic reorganization
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