Word of the DaySaturday, October 15, 2011
\uh-SKANS\ , adverb;
With suspicion, mistrust, or disapproval.
With a side glance; sidewise; obliquely.
People had been looking askance at him for as long as he could remember, and he thought it was time to put a stop to that.
-- Richard Russo, The Risk Pool
Grasping this essential of life in a big city he sees the place not as a confronted whole, but continually askance.
-- V.S. Pritchett, The Complete Essays
The origin of askance has not been verifiably determined. It is possibly a variant of the Old Norse word askew meaning "to one side."
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