follow Dictionary.com

What is the X in X-mas?

squall1

[skwawl] /skwɔl/
noun
1.
a sudden, violent gust of wind, often accompanied by rain, snow, or sleet.
2.
a sudden disturbance or commotion.
verb (used without object)
3.
to blow as a squall.
Origin
1690-1700
1690-1700; perhaps special use of squall2
Related forms
squallish, adjective

squall2

[skwawl] /skwɔl/
verb (used without object)
1.
to cry or scream loudly and violently:
The hungry baby began to squall.
verb (used with object)
2.
to utter in a screaming tone.
noun
3.
the act or sound of squalling:
The baby's squall was heard next door.
Origin
1625-35; perhaps < Old Norse skvala shriek, cry; compare Swedish, Norwegian skvala splash, stream
Related forms
squaller, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for squalls
  • The photo above is from a somewhat protected area of the mountainside as one of these snow squalls approached.
  • The weather has been generally overcast with lots of snow squalls and moderate to heavy seas.
  • In fact, during rain squalls, they actually use them as umbrellas.
  • Parachutes open too late or squalls of wind send a jumper into a cliff.
  • Rain squalls on the horizon simply added a deadline.
  • Dense fog and sudden squalls are common, and the park is closed in the winter because of extreme weather conditions.
  • If possible, the average wind speed should not be determined during a peak or a lull in gusty winds or squalls.
  • In times of heat or sudden rain squalls, there are shelters on the pier to provide protection.
  • They yap frequently in short squalls ending in a long gargling sound.
  • On the eighteenth the wind increased, accompanied by squalls and snow, and at midnight land was reported dead ahead.
British Dictionary definitions for squalls

squall1

/skwɔːl/
noun
1.
a sudden strong wind or brief turbulent storm
2.
any sudden commotion or show of temper
verb
3.
(intransitive) to blow in a squall
Derived Forms
squallish, adjective
squally, adjective
Word Origin
C18: perhaps a special use of squall²

squall2

/skwɔːl/
verb
1.
(intransitive) to cry noisily; yell
noun
2.
a shrill or noisy yell or howl
Derived Forms
squaller, noun
Word Origin
C17: probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Icelandic skvala to shout; see squeal
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for squalls

squall

n.

"sudden, violent gust of wind," 1719, originally nautical, probably from a Scandinavian source (cf. Norwegian skval "sudden rush of water," Swedish skvala "to gush, pour down"), probably ultimately a derivative of squall (v.).

v.

"cry out loudly," 1630s, probably from Old Norse skvala "to cry out," of imitative origin (cf. squeal). Related: Squalled; squalling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
squalls in Science
squall
  (skwôl)   
A brief, sudden, violent windstorm, often accompanied by rain or snow. A squall is said to occur if a wind having a sustained speed of 40 km (25 mi) per hour lasts at least 1 minute and then decreases rapidly. See also squall line.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Article for squalls

squall

as used by weather forecasters, a sudden wind-speed increase of 8 metres per second (18 miles per hour) or more, for one minute or longer. It includes several briefer wind-speed changes, or gusts. A squall is often named for the weather phenomenon that accompanies it, such as rain, hail, or thunder; a line squall is one associated with a squall line of thunderstorms that is often hundreds of kilometres long.

Learn more about squall with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for squall

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for squalls

16
19
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for squalls