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[hand-sheyk] /ˈhændˌʃeɪk/
a gripping and shaking of right hands by two individuals, as to symbolize greeting, congratulation, agreement, or farewell.
Also, handshaking. Computers. an exchange of predetermined signals between a computer and a peripheral device or another computer, made when a connection is initially established or at intervals during data transmission, in order to assure proper synchronization.
Origin of handshake
1870-75; hand + shake Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for handshake
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She greeted me most cordially with a handshake and a "good day to a good winner."

    At Start and Finish William Lindsey
  • Adams gratefully protracted the handshake that accompanied these inquiries.

    Alice Adams Booth Tarkington
  • He passed from one to the other and his handshake was only the elusive passage of his fingers through their palms.

    The Seventh Man Max Brand
  • Moore seemed enraptured at the handshake and breathless over the occasion.

    The Prisoner Alice Brown
  • How could he ratify an adieu with a handshake, on the top of a question that called for an answer?

    When Ghost Meets Ghost William Frend De Morgan
British Dictionary definitions for handshake


the act of grasping and shaking a person's hand, as when being introduced or agreeing on a deal
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 handshake

1801, from hand (n.) + shake (n.). Hand-shaking is attested from 1805.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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handshake in Technology
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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Idioms and Phrases with handshake


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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