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[shur] /ʃɜr/
verb (used with object)
to draw up or gather (cloth or the like) on three or more parallel threads.
to bake (eggs removed from the shell) in a shallow dish or in individual dishes.
Also, shirring. a shirred arrangement, as of cloth.
Origin of shirr
1840-50; origin uncertain
Related forms
unshirred, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for shirred
Historical Examples
  • She shirred and sewed together a piece of cloth about three yards around.

  • Melon or berries, broiled ham, shirred eggs, creamed potatoes.

  • Half curtains of white muslin are shirred on the sashes back of the dressing-table.

    The House in Good Taste Elsie de Wolfe
  • Then a small heading is made on one side of the strip that is to be shirred.

  • French were the shirred, silk shades upon the electric lamps, French the music upon the chic rosewood piano.

    The Fortieth Door Mary Hastings Bradley
  • When Hennessy heard of it he shirred his mouth into a pucker and whistled ecstatically.

    Leerie Ruth Sawyer
  • Butter a shirred egg dish, crack two eggs into it, and season with salt and pepper.

  • shirred eggs are usually served in the individual dishes they are baked in.

  • How thankful I was that I had put on my blue organdie and my shirred hat!

  • Una saw that it was lined with shirred red satin and had red tassels.

    Rainbow Valley Lucy Maud Montgomery
British Dictionary definitions for shirred


to gather (fabric) into two or more parallel rows to decorate a dress, blouse, etc, often using elastic thread
(transitive) to bake (eggs) out of their shells
a series of gathered rows decorating a dress, blouse, etc
Word Origin
C19: of unknown origin
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 shirred



"to gather (cloth) on parallel threads," 1860 (implied in shirring), back-formation from shirred (1847), from shirr (n.) "elastic webbing," of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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