AskDefine | Define shaft

Dictionary Definition



1 a line that forms the length of an arrow pointer
2 an aggressive remark directed at a person like a missile and intended to have a telling effect; "his parting shot was `drop dead'"; "she threw shafts of sarcasm"; "she takes a dig at me every chance she gets" [syn: shot, slam, dig, barb, jibe, gibe]
3 a long rod or pole (especially the handle of an implement or the body of a weapon like a spear or arrow)
4 a column of light (as from a beacon) [syn: beam, beam of light, light beam, ray, ray of light, shaft of light, irradiation]
5 the main (mid) section of a long bone [syn: diaphysis]
6 obscene terms for penis [syn: cock, prick, dick, pecker, peter, tool, putz]
7 a long pointed rod used as a weapon [syn: spear, lance]
8 a vertical passageway through a building (as for an elevator)
9 (architecture) upright consisting of the vertical part of a column [syn: scape]
10 a vertical passage into a mine
11 a revolving rod that transmits power or motion [syn: rotating shaft]
12 the hollow shaft of a feather [syn: quill, calamus]


1 equip with a shaft
2 defeat someone in an expectation through trickery or deceit [syn: cheat, chouse, screw, chicane, jockey]

User Contributed Dictionary



sceaft, from Germanic *skaftaz. Cognate with Dutch schaft, German Schaft, Swedish skaft.



  1. The long narrow body of a spear or arrow
    Her hand slipped off of the javelin's shaft towards the spearpoint and thats why her score was lowered, Sam.
  2. A beam or ray of light
    Isn't that shaft of light from that opening in the cave beautiful?
  3. Any long thin object, such as the handle of a tool, one of the poles between which an animal is harnessed to a vehicle, the drive shaft of an engine.
    Dude, the baseball bat's shaft got broken by the amazing pitch!
  4. The main axis of a feather
    I had no idea that they removed the feathers' shafts to make the pillows softer!
  5. The long narrow body of a lacrosse stick
    Sarah if you wear gloves your hands might not slip on your shaft and you can up your game, girl!
  6. A long narrow passage sunk into the earth, for mining etc; a mineshaft.
    Your grandfather used to work with a crane hauling ore out of the gold mines shafts.
  7. A vertical passage housing a lift or elevator; a liftshaft.
    Darn it, my keys fell through the gap and into the elevator shaft.
  8. A ventilation or heating conduit
    My bird flew into the air duct and got stuck in the shaft.
  9. A malicious act, as in “to give someone the shaft”
    That bitch at work gave me the shaft, she ratted me out to the boss for being late!
  10. The shaft of the penis
    I grabbed his big cock by the shaft and squeezed it hard to his grudging approval.


long narrow body of spear or arrow
  • Finnish: varsi
beam or ray of light
  • Finnish: valokeila
any long, thin object
  • Czech: hřídel
  • Finnish: varsi, aisa, akseli, kanki
  • Slovak: os , hriadeľ
main axis of a feather
  • Finnish: ruoto
lacrosse: long narrow body of the stick
  • Finnish: varsi
long narrow passage sunk into the earth
  • Finnish: kuilu, kaivoskuilu
vertical passage housing a lift
  • Finnish: kuilu, hissikuilu
ventilation or heating conduit
  • Finnish: kanava
malicious act
the shaft of the penis
  • Finnish: varsi, kanki
  • Spanish: tronco


  1. to equip something with a shaft
  2. transitive slang To have sexual intercourse with someone
  3. transitive slang To engage in a malicious act, as in "He got shafted."


to equip with a shaft
  • Finnish: varttaa
slang: to have sexual intercourse
  • Finnish: kepittää
slang: to engage in a malicious act
  • Finnish: mopottaa

Extensive Definition

Shaft can refer to:
In fiction:
  • Shaft (rave), a UK dance music act which had a 1991 hit with 'Roobarb and Custard' sampling vintage children's television programme 'Roobarb'
  • Shaft (band), a dance music act which had a 1999 hit with a cover/remix of (Mucho Mambo) Sway
  • Shaft (New Zealand band), a New Zealand indie band
  • Shaft (club), a blues and jazz club in Istanbul, Turkey
Enclosed spaces:
Rotating devices:
  • Axle, a central (usually non-rotating) shaft around which a wheel or gear or similar device rotates
  • Spindle, a central (usually rotating) shaft, to which a wheel or gear or similar device may be attached
  • Driveshaft, a shaft for transferring power
shaft in Czech: Šachta
shaft in German: Shaft
shaft in French: Shaft
shaft in Italian: Shaft
shaft in Dutch: Shaft
shaft in Japanese: シャフト
shaft in Portuguese: Fuste
shaft in Simple English: Shaft
shaft in Finnish: Shaft

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abysm, abyss, adit, air duct, air hole, air passage, air shaft, air tube, airway, antenna tower, arch, arrow, arrowhead, baluster, balustrade, banister, bank, barb, barbican, barbule, barrel, barrow, base, beam, belfry, bell tower, blowhole, bobtailed arrow, bolt, boundary stone, brass, breathing hole, bust, cairn, campanile, caryatid, cavity, cenotaph, chasm, chested arrow, cilium, cloth yard shaft, coal mine, colliery, colonnade, colossus, column, crater, crevasse, cromlech, cross, cup, cupola, cut, cyclolith, dado, dart, deep, depth, derrick, die, dig, diggings, dolmen, dome, duct, excavation, filament, filamentule, fire tower, flight, flue, footstalk, footstone, gibe, gleam, gold mine, grave, gravestone, gulf, handle, headstone, helve, hoarstone, hole, hollow, inscription, jab, jack, jibe, knock, lantern, lighthouse, louver, louverwork, marker, martello, martello tower, mast, mausoleum, megalith, memento, memorial, memorial arch, memorial column, memorial statue, memorial stone, menhir, minaret, mine, monolith, monument, mound, naris, necrology, newel-post, nostril, obelisk, obituary, observation tower, open cut, opencast, pagoda, pedestal, pedicel, peduncle, pencil, pier, pilaster, pile, piling, pillar, pinnacle, pit, plaque, plinth, pole, post, potshot, prize, put-down, pylon, pyramid, quarrel, quarry, queen-post, quill, ray, reed, reliquary, remembrance, ribbon, rod, rostral column, screw, screwing, shank, shoot, shrine, skyscraper, socle, spilehole, spiracle, spire, staff, stalk, stanchion, stand, standard, standpipe, steeple, stela, stem, stick, sting, stone, streak, stupa, subbase, surbase, tablet, television mast, testimonial, thrust, tomb, tombstone, tope, touchhole, tour, tower, transom, trophy, trunk, tunnel, turret, upright, vent, ventage, venthole, ventiduct, ventilating shaft, ventilator, volley, water tower, well, wind tunnel, windmill tower, workings, yawning abyss
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