Definition of askew in English:



  • 1predicative Not in a straight or level position.

    ‘her hat was slightly askew’
    ‘the door was hanging askew on one twisted hinge’
    • ‘Marin's glasses were slightly askew as he marked something in red pen on the paper in front of him.’
    • ‘Objects that would normally hug the wall were positioned askew.’
    • ‘The posts would be different sizes of papers laid out, slightly askew, all over the table.’
    • ‘In addition, the linear elements sometimes run slightly askew as they move from panel to panel.’
    • ‘Brent turned to me, rolling his eyes, his tri-corner hat slightly askew.’
    • ‘At the door two glassy-eyed guards slowly tilt their heads slightly askew in opposite directions, and then towards each other.’
    • ‘The whole construction is slightly askew; a sense of fragility and flimsiness is heightened by its literal fracturing into two sections.’
    • ‘Are the plates for light switches and outlets square or slightly askew?’
    • ‘There are the waiters, many of whom are Luger transplants, who rush through the crowd wearing long aprons and slightly askew snap-on bow ties.’
    • ‘If the layers are arranged in neat, parallel rows, instead of being slightly askew, then a volcanic process is more likely, he says.’
    • ‘The images, presented at different scales on off-white paper, are slightly askew so as not to become confrontational.’
    • ‘When he brings the car to a halt we find ourselves outside a dilapidated, three-storeyed structure bearing a hotel sign, the last letter of which is slightly askew.’
    • ‘It was then that he noticed the slightly askew vent cover.’
    • ‘His thick eyeglasses were slightly askew, but otherwise he was impeccable, dressed as always in brightly colored slacks and a plaid jacket.’
    • ‘The odd crooked stitch or slightly askew angel wing just shows that it is homemade and adds to the charm.’
    • ‘He still wore his suit, his tie only slightly askew.’
    • ‘He was a sickly grey color, his glasses were slightly askew, his hair was limp as if he hadn't even bothered with it that morning, and his coat and pants were rumpled.’
    • ‘His cap was worn slightly askew, and his hair was cut extremely short in an unusual geometric pattern around his ears.’
    • ‘My eyes stuck on the bow tie, because it was slightly askew.’
    • ‘My bangs were slightly askew, and I played around with them for a few moments before walking in.’
    crooked, crookedly, lopsided, lopsidedly, tilted, angled, at an angle, oblique, obliquely, at an oblique angle, skew, skewed, slanted, aslant, awry, out of true, out of line, to one side, on one side, uneven, unevenly, off balance, off centre, asymmetrical, asymmetrically, unsymmetrical, unsymmetrically
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Wrong; awry.
      ‘the plan went sadly askew’
      ‘the judging was a bit askew’
      • ‘This is a decent article I think, but I also think this guy's view is slightly askew.’
      • ‘Don't punish the press just because the publishers' plans have gone askew.’
      • ‘The film is sometimes undeniably clever and its vision of the world is suitably askew, but often the tone wobbles unevenly between straight drama and morbid comedy.’
      • ‘One slip and the entire story would go slightly askew.’
      • ‘A few of the facts are slightly askew but the enthusiasm of the article is interesting.’


Mid 16th century: from a- ‘on’+ skew.