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[uh-skyoo] /əˈskyu/
to one side; out of line; in a crooked position; awry:
to wear one's hat askew; to hang a picture askew.
with disapproval, scorn, contempt, etc.; disdainfully:
They looked askew at the painting.
crooked; awry:
Your clothes are all askew.
Origin of askew
1565-75; a-1 + skew
Related forms
askewness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for askew
  • Her office is velvet, chintz and very mauve; nary a pillow is askew.
  • Upon re-entering the room, I instinctively adjusted a picture on the wall, a floral painting which was slightly askew.
  • To invent, you must think aside -- that is, slightly askew.
  • If they're taking the time to write about it, then hopefully they will take the time to consider how their view is askew.
  • Hill's stories are beautiful, terrible, realistic and askew—sometimes simultaneously.
  • The dispute arose from an incident in 1997, when an employee straightened a mirror knocked askew by a slamming door.
  • Floors and windows are sharply askew.
  • And given the way my life often goes, the tiara would be askew.
  • Go too fast while turning and the car still gets a little askew.
  • His tie is askew, more nuisance noose than sartorial accouterment.
British Dictionary definitions for askew


adverb, adjective
at an oblique angle; towards one side; awry
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for askew

1570s, of uncertain etymology; perhaps literally "on skew" (see skew), or from the Old Norse form, a ska. Earlier askoye is attested in the same sense (early 15c.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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