noun, plural sheaths [sheeth z] /ʃiðz/.
- a case or covering for the blade of a sword, dagger, or the like.
- any similar close-fitting covering or case.
- a condom.
- Biology. a closely enveloping part or structure, as in an animal or plant.
- Botany. the leaf base when it forms a vertical coating surrounding the stem.
- a close-fitting dress, skirt, or coat, especially an unbelted dress with a straight drape.
- Electricity. the metal covering of a cable.
- the metal wall of a wave guide.
- a space charge formed by ions near an electrode in a tube containing low-pressure gas.
- the region of a space charge in a cathode-ray tube.
verb (used with object)
- to sheathe.
verb (used with object), sheathed, sheath·ing.
- to put (a sword, dagger, etc.) into a sheath.
- to plunge (a sword, dagger, etc.) in something as if in a sheath.
- to enclose in or as if in a casing or covering.
- to cover or provide with a protective layer or sheathing: to sheathe a roof with copper.
- to cover (a cable, electrical connector, etc.) with a metal sheath for grounding.
noun plural sheaths (ʃiːðz)
- a case or covering for the blade of a knife, sword, etc
- any similar close-fitting case
- biology an enclosing or protective structure, such as a leaf base encasing the stem of a plant
- the protective covering on an electric cable
- a figure-hugging dress with a narrow tapering skirt
- another name for condom
- (tr) another word for sheathe
- to insert (a knife, sword, etc) into a sheath
- (esp of cats) to retract (the claws)
- to surface with or encase in a sheath or sheathing
n.Old English sceað, scæð, from Proto-Germanic *skaithiz (cf. Old Saxon scethia, Old Norse skeiðir (plural), Old Frisian skethe, Middle Dutch schede, Dutch schede, Old High German skaida, German scheide “a sheath, scabbard”), according to OED, possibly from root *skei- “divide, split” (see shed (v.)) on notion of a split stick with the sword blade inserted. Meaning “condom” is recorded from 1861; sense of “close-fitting dress or skirt” is attested from 1904. v.c.1400, “to furnish (a sword, etc.) with a sheath,” from sheath; meaning “to put (a sword, etc.) in a sheath” is attested from early 15c. Related: Sheathed; sheathing. n. pl. sheaths (shēðz, shēths)
- An enveloping tubular structure, such as the tissue that encloses a muscle or nerve fiber.
- An enveloping tubular structure, such as the base of a grass leaf that surrounds the stem or the tissue that encloses a muscle or nerve fiber.