There are 2 main definitions of sling in English:

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sling 1

Line breaks: sling


1A flexible strap or belt used in the form of a loop to support or raise a hanging weight: the horse had to be supported by a sling fixed to the roof
More example sentences
  • They often looked unarmed, but they always had a defensive trick hidden away; knife sheathed in their boot, a sling under their belt.
  • From days spent in the field, we've discovered that a ‘non-skid’ patch on the sling is worth its weight in gold.
  • It was also equipped with a hanging sling for weighing the large fish.
1.1A bandage or soft strap looped round the neck to support an injured arm: she had her arm in a sling
More example sentences
  • Patients should begin with pendulum exercises with the injured arm in the sling.
  • Neither did he fully realize the identity of the kindred soul who was patiently rearranging the positions of his arm in the sling or giving his injured leg a soft massage.
  • Mary's four sisters were rushing around as the four nurses: cleaning cuts, setting arms in slings, and bandaging legs.
support bandage, support, bandage, strap
1.2A pouch or frame for carrying a baby, supported by a strap round the neck or shoulders: a baby sling
More example sentences
  • There are several advantages to using a sling to carry your baby in.
  • A lot of people swear by carrying the baby everywhere in a sling.
  • It's not that long ago I remember being taunted in the street by building-site workers for carrying a baby in a sling.
1.3A short length of rope used to provide additional support for the body in abseiling or climbing.
Example sentences
  • After installing the bolt, I clipped it with a short sling to allow the rope to run freely beneath the overhang.
  • Essential supplies carried by the assessors include a survival shelter, 30-metre rope, climbing sling and karabiner, along with the inevitable first aid kit.
  • ‘The evidence of their possession is the rusting pitons, abseil slings and other paraphernalia which adorn the main ridge,’ he said.
2A simple weapon in the form of a strap or loop, used to hurl stones or other small missiles: 700 men armed only with slings
More example sentences
  • Men of the armies fought with double-edged swords, battle-axes, lances, slings, and weapons of archery.
  • To gain some protection by distancing themselves from the dangers of close combat, early fighters used throwing weapons - slings, bows, javelins, and spears.
  • By the 14th century counterweighted trebuchets with slings to multiply the force with which the projectile was hurled had reached a high degree of sophistication.
catapult, slingshot;
Australian/New Zealand  shanghai
3Australian /NZ informal A bribe or gratuity.
Example sentences
  • She reminds me of when two cricket players admitted taking slings.
  • In 1995, hundreds of officers at dozens of police stations around metropolitan Melbourne enjoyed a sling from security companies.
  • Robinson explained the $200 - a sling for a previous win which was handed to him - was given to a licensed trainer.

verb (past and past participle slung /slʌŋ/)

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1 [with object and adverbial of place] Suspend or arrange (something), especially with a strap or straps, so that it hangs loosely in a particular position: a hammock was slung between two trees
More example sentences
  • She slung the gun on a strap so it would hang across her back while she held her crossbow.
  • If you have a couple of large trees, you can sling a hammock between them - a lovely thing to lie in and watch the leaves and the sky.
  • Several small fires were crackling away and shelters were slung between trees.
hang, suspend, string, dangle, swing, drape
1.1Carry (something, especially a garment) loosely and casually about one’s person: he had his jacket slung over one shoulder
More example sentences
  • Her long scarlet cloak was slung over a bronze mail shirt that flashed the sunlight.
  • Leather bags carrying a copy of the Koran are slung over their shoulders.
  • He carried Misha out with him, still holding the plastic bag and carrying the black case slung over his back.
1.2Hoist or transfer (something) with a sling: horse after horse was slung up from the barges
More example sentences
  • Each mold filled with a predetermined amount of concrete is slung up fore and aft by the ceiling traveling crane.
  • The generator set was then slung and moved off the bed of the wagon and into the clear area on the ground.
2 [with object and adverbial of direction] British informal Casually throw or fling: sling a few things into your knapsack
More example sentences
  • He was going to sling me into jail and throw away the key.
  • That was when his interest in Walsh was first piqued by a disparaging throwaway remark slung across the kitchen table by his mother.
  • He took Fernet's weapon sacks and the bag of ransom money and slung those on, too, groaning at the weight of them.
throw, toss, fling, hurl, cast, pitch, lob, launch, flip, shy, catapult, send flying, let fly with
informal chuck, bung, heave, buzz, whang
North American informal peg
Australian informal hoy
New Zealand informal bish
2.1Hurl (a stone or other missile) from a sling or similar weapon: a boulder that was slung from a catapult
More example sentences
  • I built two real catapults that would sling a 200-pound ball of granite and do it about 300 or 400 yards.
  • So, is the old 92 design up to slinging a .475 diameter 325-grain bullet at 48,000 psi?
  • Then you need to cover the hole you made so the ball bearings don't fly out as you sling it.
2.2 [no object] (sling off) Australian /NZ informal Mock; make fun: I wasn’t slinging off at your religion
More example sentences
  • Why is it then that there are these damned drop-kicks out there who still pollute the pages of this section slinging off at our PM?
  • There is no use trying to change those radicals who sling off at me and other Aussies who just want to enjoy our country and want to keep our freedom.
  • I suppose the bunch who sling off at me would defend him and his mob for breaking our laws!
3 [no object] Australian /NZ informal Pay a bribe or gratuity: they didn’t forget to sling when the backhanders came in


put someone's (or have one's) ass in a sling
North American vulgar slang Cause someone to be (or be) in trouble: I’m not letting some hotshot Lone Ranger type put my ass in a sling
More example sentences
  • "He has his ass in a sling," said a former deputy to the independent counsel.
  • I think he carried things too far, threw caution to the wind because of ego and got his ass in a sling.
sling beer
North American informal Work as a bartender.
Example sentences
  • First there's the feckless bartender Randy, content to sling beer at McCool's until the night that he meets her.
  • By the age of 17, Pauline started slinging beer in gritty taverns where bands played rock and blues.
  • Any time left after slinging beer and selling shoes was spent hacking away at her piano.
sling hash (or plates)
North American informal Serve food in a cafe or diner: I had to take orders, sling hash, wipe up, and fill the shakers
More example sentences
  • From eight to two I pace the chessboard floor behind the counter, eying plummeting coffee levels, slinging hash, and serving bacon-egg-and-cheese sandwiches, salt, pepper, ketchup, a smile and a pinch of sass.
  • The play's driving force is Terry, an alcoholic, out-of-work actor slinging hash at a mob-owned diner.
  • I still wait tables and sling hash for a living and I'm loving it!
sling one's hook
see hook.
slings and arrows
Used with reference to adverse factors or circumstances: the slings and arrows of outrageous critics
[With reference to Shakespeare's Hamlet iii. i. 58]
More example sentences
  • Does the above general definition of this all-important institution of higher learning, to distastefully paraphrase William Shakespeare, suffer from the slings and arrows of outrageous idealism?
  • Thirteen years later, the band has survived continual line-up and label changes, weathered the slings and arrows of litigation and ignorance, and all the while managed to further create and define a unique sound.
  • In between, of course, came an arsenal of slings and arrows.


Pronunciation: /ˈslɪŋə/
Example sentences
  • I share Chris Conley's suspicion of the tendency to throw mud on people of great accomplishment and as one of the recent slingers I take his questions seriously.
  • This guitar slinger and singer whiled away his childhood in this very neighbourhood; and the prodigal son returns from some busy road trips with Adam Gregory to perform this night.
  • We expected so very much more from a slinger of rhyme.


Middle English: probably from Low German, of symbolic origin; compare with German Schlinge 'noose, snare'. sense 2 of the verb is from Old Norse slyngva.

  • When referring to a loop used as a support or weapon, sling is probably from Dutch. The expression slings and arrows, ‘adverse factors or circumstances’, comes from the ‘To be or not to be’ speech in Shakespeare's Hamlet: ‘Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer / The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, / Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, / And by opposing end them.’

Words that rhyme with sling

Beijing, bing, bring, Chungking, cling, ding, dingaling, fling, I Ching, king, Kunming, ling, Ming, Nanjing, Peking, ping, ring, sing, Singh, spring, sting, string, swing, Synge, thing, ting, wing, wring, Xining, zing
Definition of sling in:
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There are 2 main definitions of sling in English:

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sling 2 Line breaks: sling


A sweetened drink of spirits, especially gin, and water. See also Singapore sling.
Example sentences
  • In the capital, clubbers drink Kabul slings and canned Russian beer.
  • What is known is it was once considered a specific type of mixed drink among many others, including flips, crustas, swizzles and bittered slings.
  • The Singapore Sling really did originate in Singapore, and was thought to be a drink for the ladies because it was pink.


Mid 18th century: of unknown origin.

  • When referring to a loop used as a support or weapon, sling is probably from Dutch. The expression slings and arrows, ‘adverse factors or circumstances’, comes from the ‘To be or not to be’ speech in Shakespeare's Hamlet: ‘Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer / The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, / Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, / And by opposing end them.’

Definition of sling in:
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