Main definitions of shed in English

: shed1shed2

shed1

nounPlural sheds

  • 1A simple roofed structure used for garden storage, to shelter animals, or as a workshop.

    ‘a bicycle shed’
    ‘a garden shed’
    • ‘Other features include two garden sheds with slated roofs, a tiled pergola, and low voltage ground lighting.’
    • ‘However, mostly they decorated backyards or cattle sheds.’
    • ‘The spread of wage labour in mines, factories, ports, and shearing sheds saw the rise of trade unionism during the 1870s.’
    • ‘It sits in piles by the side of the road, stacked in sods for drying before it is carted off in sacks to hearthsides and fuel sheds all over the region.’
    • ‘A combined area of new and existing cattle sheds and silage yards of more than 300 square metres will also require planning permission.’
    • ‘They are the best days of our lives, or so we are told, a time for learning more about the world, kissing behind the bike sheds and forging lifelong friendships.’
    • ‘He also warned that recently lambed ewes and their lambs should not be put in sheds where cattle are nearby due to the risk of transmitting bovine malignant catarrh which can be fatal to cattle.’
    • ‘At night, all the dogs are taken inside the house, while the cattle have a shed to sleep in.’
    • ‘Mosquitoes were collected from human dwellings, cattle sheds and outdoors.’
    • ‘As a matter of fact, so many of us cycled to school that the bike sheds filled an entire tennis court.’
    • ‘Wet weather at this time of the year results in very moist warm conditions in cattle sheds.’
    • ‘With judgment like that, would you trust any of these gentry to put a roof on your garden shed?’
    • ‘Weekly visits were made to each village and mosquito collections were made in and around the pig enclosures and cattle sheds with the help of mouth aspirators, aided by flash lights at dusk.’
    • ‘Malton has virtually completed all the work necessary, both in the cattle shed and the sheep shed.’
    • ‘Under these, secondary schools will be entitled to £10,000 and primaries to £5,000 to spend on facilities such as bicycle sheds.’
    • ‘He found a milk crate in the shed and shoved it over to the side window.’
    • ‘Some of the articles auctioned included garden sheds, air conditioners, computer accessories, caravans, bookshelves and household items.’
    • ‘When sows are brought to the pastures, they move into a variety of farrowing sheds.’
    • ‘We clipped the backs and tummies of all cattle in the sheds and found it helps keep them cool and there is less scratching.’
    • ‘Farmers emptied their barnyards and built factory-size sheds in the rolling hills.’
    hut, lean-to, outhouse, outbuilding, shack
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A larger structure for storing or maintaining vehicles or other machinery.
      ‘a shed is required for the three engines’
      • ‘The city's first railway station was at Milford in 1847 with engine sheds established at Churchfields in 1901.’
      • ‘This drew us past a shed full of equally ancient, rusting machines, and through the mine entrance.’
      • ‘The investigating officer said it appeared the fire had started from within one of the vehicles stored in the shed and then quickly spread.’
      • ‘The whaling canoes are stored in a wooden shed, idle for the past six years.’
      • ‘The only building on the otherwise vacant block is a machinery shed.’
      • ‘Outside the classroom there's a shed full of heavy machinery used in training.’
      • ‘The court heard he went on a fire-starting spree over a five-year period after unsuccessfully applying to join the fire service, targeting houses, sheds and vehicles.’
      • ‘His machine sheds and other structures dot the province.’
      • ‘Jess just nodded again and took off down the path in the direction of the machinery shed.’
      • ‘The house, which comes complete with an attached garage, is set back from the road in mature gardens with shaped lawns, a paved sun patio, a pond, a lockable store, a shed and a greenhouse.’
      • ‘The first powered aircraft was disassembled and stored in a shed behind the brothers' bicycle shop in Dayton, Ohio.’
      • ‘He has applied to the council for planning permission for a machinery shed at Church Avenue, Stradbally.’
      • ‘From the docks, specialized equipment was stored in sheds or moved directly to designated bases along back roads at night.’
      • ‘‘This is a quick transformation from a store to a shed,’ said Mr Feeney.’
      • ‘The machinery shed actually got built and even the inside is 95% finished.’
      • ‘The signal will now be stored in engine sheds near Grosmont until a team of experts can begin the painstaking task of restoring it to its former glory.’
      • ‘We're able to pool our infrastructure: machinery, equipment and machinery sheds.’
      • ‘Leeds Crown Court heard that the father-of-two, who is accused of 18 attacks on houses, sheds and vehicles in Bradford, was either out for revenge or wanted to play the hero.’
      • ‘Of the vehicles broken into, 28.5% were parked in a garage, shed, driveway or yard.’
      • ‘A couple of stone throws away, near the machinery sheds, is the old homestead with its original wood-fired stove.’
    2. 1.2Australian, NZ A building for shearing sheep or milking cattle.
      • ‘Outside the museum is a model of a shearing shed from the colonial period with the blades for shearing and a wool press.’
      • ‘Heated conversations are being held around kitchen tables, in school staffrooms, in cowsheds, and in shearing sheds.’
      • ‘More than half of all the antibiotics used in this country are used in the farms and in the poultry sheds and all the rest of it, now that's obscene for a start.’
      • ‘Subdivisional fences and fences around buildings and sheds are referred to, and that appears to be the extent of it.’
      • ‘Now the new dairy farmers have built milking sheds for a cost in excess of $100,000.’
      • ‘At the back of the old homestead a large shed was the former Taranaki Herald building, the first newspaper in New Plymouth.’
      • ‘The traditional Kiwi attitude towards building one's own home, farm building, or backyard shed is compromised by the very prescriptive nature of this bill.’
      • ‘The art students, who were here making sculptures, have gone, there is a shearing team in the shearing quarters now, and sheep are being shorn in the shearing shed.’
      • ‘As soon as he switched to cows, he advertised for sharemilkers, providing the chosen ones with the land, a farmhouse, dairy herd and milking shed.’
      • ‘This jacket is so cool that the cow it was made from was probably smoking a joint and listening to Hendrix while the rest of the herd was in the milking shed.’
      • ‘There's 140 years of family history there and many years of building up the fences, sheds and just sheer hard work.’
      • ‘First there was that workaday stuff used as the skin for thousands of Outback shearing sheds.’
      • ‘Ammonium nitrate fertiliser is common in Bundaberg farming sheds - but is also the key ingredient in making some terrorist bombs.’

verbshedding, sheds, shedded

[with object]
  • Park (a vehicle) in a depot.

    ‘the buses were temporarily shedded in that depot’

Origin

Late 15th century: apparently a variant of the noun shade.

Pronunciation

shed

/ʃɛd/

Main definitions of shed in English

: shed1shed2

shed2

verbshedding, sheds, shedded

[with object]
  • 1(of a tree or other plant) allow (leaves or fruit) to fall to the ground.

    ‘both varieties shed leaves in winter’
    • ‘In life also, plants may shed leaves, seeds, and other organs.’
    • ‘Photosynthetic gain in a plant is maximized by shedding older leaves only when photosynthesis by retranslocated nitrogen in new leaves exceeds the photosynthesis of the leaves lost.’
    • ‘Trees shed leaves from October to February; new leaves appear between February and April.’
    • ‘We bought it in early December, and it started shedding needles about a week after we got it home.’
    • ‘Have you noticed that the trees have already started shedding their leaves?’
    • ‘When a horwath tree shed its leaves, the leaves fell to the ground, and were extremely soft and fluffy.’
    • ‘In contrast, willows and poplars shed living twigs.’
    • ‘Trees had begun shedding their leaves and the water was drying quickly into thick mud.’
    • ‘Australia is the place where the trees don't shed their leaves, they shed their bark, and some mammals lay eggs.’
    • ‘If you have evergreens, perhaps the plants are just shedding older leaves to make way for new.’
    • ‘Don't be alarmed if the tree sheds an unusually large number of leaves during the first growing season.’
    • ‘You remember, Becky, where we went for a walk once, that year you said the trees were slow to shed their leaves.’
    • ‘The frost would take over and every shiny orange leaf would be shed from those trees.’
    • ‘Evergreen sclerophylls and drought semi-deciduous shrubs that shed their leaves during dry periods are the dominant plants in this region.’
    • ‘If there is a lack of ground water, trees will shed their fruit early.’
    • ‘The last of the turkey has been demolished, the new toys lie in a corner and the Christmas tree is shedding its needles at a rate of knots.’
    • ‘Most of the deciduous trees have shed their leaves by mid-December.’
    • ‘When your tree sheds its leaves, dig them into your soil in the vacant garden beds.’
    • ‘The trees had shed their leaves, leaving vast sheets of different colors covering the once bright green grasses.’
    • ‘The languorously limbed trees droop into the water, often shedding their prodigious fronds, providing a sheltered habitat for fish.’
    1. 1.1 (of a reptile, insect, etc.) allow (its skin or shell) to come off, to be replaced by another one that has grown underneath.
      • ‘In other words, the old guard is changing - not unlike a snake shedding its skin.’
      • ‘When snake sheds its skin, it slides out of it, leaves it behind and moves on blithely with life.’
      • ‘The male crabs shed their shells twice a year, in autumn and spring.’
      • ‘As though he was a snake shedding its old skin to make room for the new, Ian's human skin began to peal off of him as a scaly, dark green skin took its place.’
      • ‘The children did indeed find a snake skin; the discussion that followed about snakes shedding their skins added depth to the study.’
      • ‘Like the snake sheds its skin, we all need to leave our past again and again.’
      • ‘Tim's Sri Lankan experiences led him to consider how just as a snake sheds its skin, so too can we shed our fear of otherness, and learn to embrace other cultures.’
      • ‘Her mother had somehow shed her old body like a snake shedding its skin.’
      • ‘I have had had snakes shedding their skin in my house.’
      • ‘As their body size increases, the crabs shed their too small exoskeleton (shell).’
      • ‘Ostracods shed the carapace with each molt, whereas the conchostracans simply add material to the carapace as they grow.’
      • ‘Taylor notes that some insects swallow air to inflate their bodies when shedding their shells, but it's unknown whether they also use the air for skeletal support.’
      • ‘The great snake was shedding its skin, revealing glorious pearly scales hidden under the rock cover.’
      • ‘Both are frequently images of creativity: rabbits are prolific and snakes shed their skins and grow new ones as an act of renewal.’
      • ‘Each time the caterpillar grows bigger, it sheds its skin in a process called molting.’
      • ‘I'll shed this house like a snake or a lizard must shed its skin.’
      • ‘What is it about the rich and famous, shedding relationships and personas as fast as a snake sheds its skin?’
      • ‘But crabs and other animals that periodically shed their hard shells, or exoskeletons, face just such a predicament.’
      • ‘A layer of tension fell off like a snake shedding its skin.’
      • ‘Snakes shed their worn-out skin about six times a year.’
      slough off, cast, cast off, moult
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 (of a mammal) lose (hair) as a result of moulting, disease, or age.
      • ‘The dog sheds heavily - the Samoyedes collected the fur and wove it into a wool - so be prepared for a lot of white fuzz around the house.’
      • ‘Dogs also require regular grooming, as all dogs shed hair.’
      • ‘Most of the hair that is shed from a Shih Tzu's coat will end up in the brush if you brush daily.’
      • ‘In female pattern hair loss, when the affected hair is shed, the root grows one in its place that is shorter.’
      • ‘I donned an apron and she shed her blond hair all over it.’
      • ‘Within three to four weeks, nearly all of the newly transplanted hairs will be shed.’
      • ‘After being shed, affected hairs can harbor viable organisms for more than one year.’
      • ‘For instance, someone who is especially house proud will not want a dog with a long coat which sheds hair all over the furniture.’
      • ‘The hairs can be shed or inserted by direct contact with potential predators by rubbing the region with urticating hairs.’
      • ‘I wanted to shed everything, and I shed the hair as well.’
      • ‘There are fewer than 12 breeders in the UK who produce the dogs, which shed no hair and eliminate the problems for allergy sufferers.’
      • ‘Suppose I have an idea for a new spray that will prevent household pets from shedding hair all over your nice clothes and furniture.’
      • ‘Poor Dolly is having a really bad moult, shedding great wads of fine grey hair.’
      • ‘My dog is shedding more hair than usual.’
      • ‘Cheap brushes are a huge headache mainly because they shed hair and lose their shape quicker than quality brushes.’
      • ‘It is well known that shedding hair and dandruff into the surgical area contributes to an increase in infection.’
      • ‘In the summer, the arctic fox sheds its white coat for a brown one for better cover.’
      • ‘Though the baby soon sheds the hair on his head, the moustache only grows thicker.’
      • ‘The season premiere's ‘plot’ revolved around a pet cat, which caused conflict by getting into all the apartments and shedding hair and pooing on furniture and leaving fleas.’
      • ‘But the hair sheds all year round, so be forewarned.’
    3. 1.3 Take off (clothes)
      ‘we shed our jackets’
      • ‘I arrived at home at last and, after shedding my formal clothes and settling into my pajamas, snuggled into bed.’
      • ‘She shed her clothes and pulled on the catsuit.’
      • ‘The flight attendant shed her clothes to reveal a bikini colored like the American flag - the shedding of her Irish identity?’
      • ‘When the moment arrives and Elena sheds her clothes in bed with Fernando, an extended conversation takes precedence over sexual contact.’
      • ‘She quickly shed the clothes she was wearing and fully dressed herself in clean garments and her brother's spare uniform.’
      • ‘The both of them fumbled down the hall, shedding their clothes and leaving them where they dropped on the ground.’
      • ‘He shivered as his bare arms were exposed to the damp air and quickly made his way to the bath chamber, shedding his clothes as he went.’
      • ‘I called out and stood from the bed, shedding my clothes.’
      • ‘As the two of us shed our clothes and moved closer to the inevitable, I was forced more and more to ignore the insistence of my rational mind that told me I was making a mistake.’
      • ‘He quickly shed his clothes and climbed gratefully into a bed that hadn't been used in too long, turning on his side so his back was to the darkened glass.’
      • ‘He sheds his white clothes because they will be visible in the night and wears only the knife around his neck.’
      • ‘I shed the clothes I was wearing, and pulled on the new outfit.’
      • ‘This double standard is what enables and entices women to shed their clothes.’
      • ‘The children seem to think it's an adventure, an adventure that includes shedding their clothes, decontamination and donning of scrubs.’
      • ‘Land and water resources departments all over Australia have been shedding their developers' clothes and putting on shiny new green ones.’
      • ‘I shed my clothes and pull on black jeans, a black shirt and black shoes and quickly tied my hair back with a black hair tie.’
      • ‘Ryan, in contrast to everyone else, seemed a bit uncomfortable with idea of quickly shedding his clothes in front of everyone.’
      • ‘Ten onlookers spontaneously shed their clothes and joined in the fun.’
      • ‘She grabbed the clothes she had shed before entering the water.’
      • ‘Suddenly, the drunken man gets up and starts shedding his clothes to reveal a well-dressed, handsome gentleman.’
      take off, remove, pull off, peel off, shrug off, discard, divest oneself of, doff, fling off, fling aside, climb out of, slip out of
      View synonyms
    4. 1.4 Have the property of repelling (water or a similar substance).
      • ‘Their fur is also excellent for shedding water, usefully reducing the risk of your clothes sticking to your skin.’
      • ‘When it's oriented up, the boards will shed water and will tend to flatten over time.’
      • ‘It keeps your feet dry as it sheds water and defies mud.’
      • ‘Because they were made of wool, they shed water, though eventually they'd get wet.’
      • ‘The hair of coastal wolves also appears to be coarser and better at shedding water, perhaps to cope with the heavy rainfall on the west coast.’
      • ‘It was outside the shelter looking even more peculiar than ever with a tight waterproof hood enclosing its head, shedding water as if it were oiled.’
      • ‘The secret is to keep the pile low and flat, so that it does not shed the rain water away.’
      • ‘When I was finished, I stood up, shedding water off my body, and wrapped myself in a towel.’
  • 2Discard (something undesirable, superfluous, or outdated)

    ‘many firms use relocation as an opportunity to shed jobs’
    • ‘That could allow it to shed jobs without adding to its fixed costs.’
    • ‘When asked whether the Chilean had shed the excess pounds he gained after his injury, he joked that all that worried him was the player's haircut.’
    • ‘Marr acknowledges that, in shedding pivotal players and considerable sums from both the playing budget and debt, his club must also shed expectations.’
    • ‘So is this the nasty party shedding its repulsive past?’
    • ‘The firm says it has no choice but to shed the jobs because there has been a fall in demand for bronze and brass products.’
    • ‘Other politicians are also shedding the pounds.’
    • ‘In the new art, men became gods by shedding triviality…’
    • ‘No sooner have people been successfully corralled into shedding a few pounds, they are hectored about the possible dangers of dieting.’
    • ‘But the transplant gives him a 95 per cent chance of shedding the syndrome and leading a normal life.’
    • ‘The introduction of the cranes will also allow the company to shed jobs from an already depleted workforce.’
    • ‘As a consequence the BBC is quickly shedding its homely image and taking on the commercial media world.’
    • ‘I am shedding youthful pursuits that don't mean that much to me anymore.’
    • ‘I just thought I was shedding the pounds through exercise.’
    • ‘Constant self-examination allows them to shed old baggage and reinvent themselves.’
    • ‘Bingo is shedding its blue rinse and mothballs image and bidding to become young, fun and sexy.’
    • ‘I don't believe that the sporting gods will punish us for contemplating victory and I'm all for shedding our national defeatism.’
    • ‘It knows that while volume production is mobile and has proved disposable, high-quality graduates in design jobs are harder to find and retain, and it doesn't look good to be callously shedding staff by the thousand.’
    • ‘Governments should not be allowed to shed this responsibility by appealing for private donations.’
    • ‘In shedding the weight, equivalent to more than 40 bags of sugar, Christine overcame a sweet tooth, which saw her balloon to a 26 dress size.’
    • ‘The high street clearers are already compensating for that with increased lending to the companies that have spent the last three years shedding costs and debt and are now showing a little more interest in expansion and acquisitions.’
    make redundant, dismiss, let go, discharge, give someone their notice, get rid of, discard
    discard, get rid of, dispose of, do away with, drop, abandon, throw out, jettison, lose, scrap, cast aside, cast off, dump, have done with, reject, repudiate
    View synonyms
  • 3Cast or give off (light)

    ‘the full moon shed a watery light on the scene’
    • ‘The setting sun shed little light in the damp cavern, and it cast eerie shadows upon the rock walls.’
    • ‘After coffee, the skies clear and the clouds respectfully lift to reveal the soft, peach-hued evening light shedding its fading rays on his face.’
    • ‘It was dark again, save for Callie, who continued shedding her halo of light.’
    • ‘The night lamp sheds tender light and the posters of Kandinsky and Mir color my white walls with festive colours.’
    • ‘Instead of regular light bulbs, which shed a dull yellow glow across the room, Mr Newton decided to splash out on daylight spectrum lighting.’
    • ‘The fragile wafer of February sun was directly overhead, shedding watery light but no warmth.’
    • ‘The bulbs shed white light, as opposed to the old-denture hue of plain old bulbs.’
    cast, send forth, send out, radiate, give out, diffuse, disperse, scatter
    View synonyms
  • 4British Accidentally allow (something) to fall off or spill.

    ‘a lorry shed its load of steel bars’
    • ‘They then took off for real, shedding armfuls of bitten plums.’
    • ‘Both lorries shed their loads on to the road, and one slid a quarter of a mile down the hill, coming to rest on the bridge at Crambeck, near Malton.’
    • ‘A lorry shed its load across Great Western Way this morning, causing long delays for commuters joining junction 16 of the M4.’
    • ‘Motorists faced long tailbacks on the Woodhead Pass after a lorry shed its load of waste paper.’
    • ‘The lorry shed its load of metal shards in the accident in Doncaster Road at Hooton Roberts, near Rotherham, disrupting rush hour traffic.’
    • ‘A spokesman said a passenger informed the station that the lorry had shed its load under the rail bridge but rail services were not delayed.’
    • ‘An articulated lorry had shed its load right outside the cop shop in Kirkdale I noticed on the way home.’
    • ‘The canvas-sided milk wagon toppled onto its side, shedding part of its load, completing blocking entry onto the motorway at junction 7, and exit from junction 8.’
    • ‘A lorry shed a cargo of paper across the Bristol Road on Saturday morning causing four hours of traffic gridlock in Chippenham.’
    • ‘The truck came to rest on its side in the car park, after demolishing a telegraph pole and shedding half its load of soya.’
    • ‘The incident started when the lorry shed its load on M62 eastbound near Birch.’
    • ‘Bricks cascaded into the path of oncoming cars as a lorry shed its load in an accident at Seend on Wednesday lunchtime.’
    let fall, let drop, drop
    View synonyms
  • 5Eliminate part of (an electrical power load) by disconnecting circuits.

Phrases

  • shed (someone's) blood

    • Be injured or killed (or kill or injure someone).

      • ‘Would you be ready to shed your blood in the name of liberty without knowing whether you are making history or just adding to the list of nameless victims of the tyranny?’
      • ‘They have shed their blood in service to their country and deserve our full commitment.’
      • ‘They can use me to shed my blood, but not to guard a treasure.’
      • ‘Innocent victims of evil had to shed their blood.’
      • ‘After having fought during twenty-five years for my country, and having shed my blood for its glory and independence, an attempt is made to accuse me of treason…’
      • ‘We know that when you were in the shock youth brigade you made a lot of sacrifices for the homeland, you even shed your blood and broke your bones.’
      • ‘Mr Chirac said France is grateful for the American soldiers ‘who shed their blood on a soil that was not their own’ during the Second World War, and pledged French allegiance to the anti-terror effort.’
      • ‘He said Italians owe a great debt of gratitude to the many young Americans who shed their blood in World War II so the Italian people could be free.’
      • ‘Now, if they are going to shed our blood, why should we look on at our women and children being clubbed, and offer no retaliation?’
      • ‘I had killed her; I did not deserve to live after shedding her blood.’
  • shed tears

    • Weep; cry.

      • ‘I, for one, am not going to be shedding tears in sympathy with her family because I believe they are totally at blame for what happened.’
      • ‘These men aren't shy about shedding tears, which is a very therapeutic thing to do.’
      • ‘Anne is not disregarding professional etiquette if she sheds tears with the patient.’
      • ‘Icons of Nicholas II had been reported as shedding tears of ‘myrrh’ in various churches.’
      • ‘In a ceremony in December 2003, dozens of slaves were liberated, many of them shedding tears of joy as they were given certificates showing they were free.’
      • ‘Instead of shedding tears tomorrow, it is better not to allow any occasion when tears should have to be shed and some concrete steps be taken to avoid its recurrence.’
      • ‘You would almost see the palm trees weeping and shedding tears.’
      • ‘Those appearing before the commission may weep, for one reason or another, but it is the taxpayers of this country, ultimately, who should be shedding tears over the incessant and ongoing revelations of this kind.’
      • ‘Then, maybe, they will stop shedding tears for the wrong victim.’
      • ‘As it happens, Diego Martin is also the location of the imprisoned statue of Our Lady of Lourdes, which has been shedding tears of blood since 1996.’
      weep, cry, sob, blubber
      View synonyms

Origin

Old English sc(e)ādan ‘separate out (one selected group), divide’, also ‘scatter’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch and German scheiden. Compare with sheath.

Pronunciation

shed

/ʃɛd/