Definition of picket in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpɪkɪt/


1A person or group of people who stand outside a workplace or other venue as a protest or to try to persuade others not to enter during a strike: forty pickets were arrested
More example sentences
  • Opponents would claim that the sight of placard-wielding pickets outside various religious functions presents the Gospel in a poor light.
  • The general secretary, who joined pickets outside the station, said the strikes proved that rail workers did not believe they were being treated fairly on pay.
  • After two months management hired a new workforce, reopened operations and called in police to disperse pickets outside the hotel.
1.1A blockade of a workplace or other venue staged by a picket: the workers walked out, mounting mass pickets at the factory gates
More example sentences
  • Then Fiat workers walked out, mounting mass pickets at factory gates.
  • Farmers are set to stage pickets at milk processing plants in North Yorkshire, according to a pressure group.
  • Union leaders should call for collections, delegations to the picket lines and mass pickets to stop any scabbing.
demonstration, picket line, blockade, boycott;
2 (also picquet) A soldier or small group of soldiers performing a particular duty, especially one sent out to watch for the enemy: when would this headlong advance run into the enemy pickets? a picket of soldiers fired a volley over the coffin
More example sentences
  • ‘No picquet should be less than 1 Officer and 15 men,’ he was told.
  • For many of the campaigns of history sentries, or larger security parties constituting infantry pickets or cavalry vedettes, did not habitually fire on one another.
  • Union cavalry pickets and Signal Corps observers would have provided similar intelligence.
3 [usually as modifier] A pointed wooden stake driven into the ground, typically to form a fence or to tether a horse: a cedar-picket stockade
More example sentences
  • It was fenced with white picket wood, and the dirt was clean and smooth, as if someone had just cleaned it up hours before.
  • In one of my gardens, in the dappled shade of oak trees, I have placed a pair of them either side of a wooden picket gate, where they are a delight each spring.
  • There was also in evidence picket poles, rods, chains and all the instrumental paraphernalia of field work.
stake, peg, post, paling;
upright, stanchion, pier, piling, palisade

verb (pickets, picketing, picketed)

[with object]
Act as a picket outside (a workplace or other venue): strikers picketed the newspaper’s main building
More example sentences
  • Many workers picketed outside courthouses in the main cities during the week.
  • Strikers picketed offices in London, Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool, Norwich, Birmingham and Nottingham.
  • Workers who picket a workplace and demonstrators who block roads or entrances to financial institutions, such as the stock exchange, could be charged as terrorists, as could computer hackers.
demonstrate at, form a picket at, man the picket line at, launch a demonstration at, protest at, form a protest group at;



Pronunciation: /ˈpɪkɪtə/
Example sentences
  • We make our way to the theater, where noisy picketers are demonstrating against the very education reforms that had been on the governor's agenda earlier in the day.
  • One police officer explained that they were responding to complaints and that, while they were in solidarity with picketers, they would have to arrest everyone.
  • The picketers had been protesting for more than a month, demanding jobs, with no response from government authorities.


Late 17th century (denoting a pointed stake, on which a soldier was required to stand on one foot as a military punishment): from French piquet 'pointed stake', from piquer 'to prick', from pic 'pike'.

Words that rhyme with picket

cricket, midwicket, picquet, piquet, pricket, snicket, thicket, ticket, wicket

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: picket

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