1 [skeyt]
ice skate ( def 1 ).
the blade of an ice skate.
a skid on a lifeboat to facilitate launching from a listing ship.
verb (used without object), skated, skating.
to glide or propel oneself over ice, the ground, etc., on skates.
to glide or slide smoothly along.
Slang. to shirk one's duty; loaf.
(of the tone arm on a record player) to swing toward the spindle while a record is playing.
verb (used with object), skated, skating.
to slide (a flat) across the floor of a stage.
get/put one's skates on, British Informal. to make haste.
skate on thin ice, to be or place oneself in a risky or delicate situation: Taking a public stand on the question would be skating on thin ice.

1640–50; orig. plural scates < Dutch schaats (singular) skate, Middle Dutch schaetse stilt (compare Medieval Latin scatia) < ?

skateable, adjective Unabridged


2 [skeyt]
noun, plural (especially collectively) skate (especially referring to two or more kinds or species) skates.
any of several rays of the genus Raja, usually having a pointed snout, as R. binoculata (big skate) inhabiting waters along the Pacific coast of the U.S., growing to a length of 8 feet (2.4 meters).

1300–50; Middle English scate < Old Norse skati


3 [skeyt]
noun Slang.
a person; fellow: He's a good skate.
a contemptible person.
an inferior, decrepit horse; nag.

perhaps special use of skate2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To Skate
World English Dictionary
skate1 (skeɪt)
1.  roller skate See ice skate
2.  the steel blade or runner of an ice skate
3.  such a blade fitted with straps for fastening to a shoe
4.  Compare bow collector a current collector on an electric railway train that collects its current from a third rail
5.  get one's skates on to hurry
6.  to glide swiftly on skates
7.  to slide smoothly over a surface
8.  skate on thin ice to place oneself in a dangerous or delicate situation
[C17: via Dutch from Old French éschasse stilt, probably of Germanic origin]

skate2 (skeɪt)
n , pl skate, skates
any large ray of the family Rajidae, of temperate and tropical seas, having flat pectoral fins continuous with the head, two dorsal fins, a short spineless tail, and a long snout
[C14: from Old Norse skata]

skate3 (skeɪt)
slang (US) a person; fellow
[from Scottish and northern English dialect skate, a derogatory term of uncertain origin]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

type of flat, cartilaginous fish, mid-14c., from O.N. skata, of unknown origin.

"ice skate or roller skate," 1662, skeates "ice skates" (the custom was brought to England after the Restoration by exiled followers of Charles II who had taken refuge in Holland), from Du. schaats (singular, mistaken in Eng. as plural), from M.Du. schaetse, from O.N.Fr. escache "a stilt, trestle,"
from O.Fr. eschace "stilt" (Fr. échasse), from Frank. *skakkja "stilt" (cf. Fris. skatja "stilt"), perhaps lit. "thing that shakes or moves fast" and related to root of O.E. sceacan "to vibrate" (see shake). Or perhaps the Du. word is connected to M.L.G. schenke, O.E. scanca "leg" (see shank). Sense alteration in Du. from "stilt" to "skate" is not clearly traced. The verb is attested from 1696; U.S. slang sense of "to get away with something" is attested from 1945.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


In addition to the idiom beginning with skate, also see cheap skate; on thin ice, skate.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
The test then would be to do the same experiment on ice with skate blades.
The songs do not generally thump-they bounce and skate.
So, let's skate to where the puck will be and invest in electric vehicles.
High level sources that skate below safety maximums provide the ability to
  concentrate in the consuming public.
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