I shot to find response to the age-old question: what—if any—is the difference in between a shiv and also a shank?


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I thought, sure, the was it. End of.

You are watching: Difference between a shiv and a shank

Alas, not.

I was slightly disheartened after reading this; from the blog post:

ShivShiv is a native that have the right to be both a noun, and also a verb. Together a noun, it describes a knife or, tho better, a slang term because that a knife. As a verb, it refers to the act of stabbing someone with a sharp object. The word has origins in the gypsy tribes of Romania and Moldova that offered such objects. If you are derisive or taunting someone, you have the right to say that he offered a Shiv to cut the rope. That course, you stated it together he did not make use of a appropriate knife to reduced the rope.ShankShank is a term that is supplied for anything the looks or works choose a knife. The is of food a slang term because that this sort of a homemade knife. It may not also be metallic come be labeled a shank. Friend can speak to a shard that glass with a fabric tied at one end as a shank.

What is the difference in between Shiv and also Shank?

Both Shiv and shank room slang terms for objects that look or occupational like knives.Shiv is frequently used to refer to sharp weapon like objects do by prisoners.The native Shiv comes from the gypsies the Romania who used them because that a knife favor object.

The probably very factually correct and also wholly trusted Oz TV Wiki claims shiv equates to shank (and angry versa). What come believe?

This write-up in the Teratology blog contains the many in-depth analysis of the matter that I have actually found:

In modern-day slang, the two room most frequently used interchangeably, in lot the same way that the nouns “cemetery” and “graveyard” are supplied to describea place of rest for the dead. The amalgamated beginnings behind the use of the term “shiv”, combined with a verbal advancement which openly alternates in between the two has led come a wholly confused usage in the contemporary American dialect. In spite of the seemingly interchangeable interchangeable properties the the terms, the love of their distinctions lies in the definitions. A “shiv” is identified as a knife. A knife, in turn, is identified as “an instrumentforcutting,consistingessentiallyofathin,sharp-edged,metalbladefittedwithahandle.” Thus, through transitive logic, a shiv is an instrument designed because that cutting or slicing in the same fashion together a knife.

Furthermore:

Despite the seemingly interchangeable properties that the terms, the love of their differences lies in the definitions. A “shiv” is defined as a knife. A knife, in turn, is identified as “an instrumentforcutting,consistingessentiallyofathin,sharp-edged,metalbladefittedwithahandle.” Thus, with transitive logic, a shiv is an tool designed for cutting or slicing in the same fashion as a knife.Given the previous description of items pertained to the noun “shank” (those gift items which taper from large to small), it i do not care clear the the noun “shank” an ext specifically describes an elongated article which tapers come a allude and is thus is primarily used because that stabbing.Similarly, the verb “to shiv” converts as “to slice” or “to knife” while the verb “to shank” correlates v “to stab.”

Hence, the author differs a shiv indigenous a shank relying on use:

shiv = cutshank = stab

Hence, any type of self-made weapon that can reduced is a shiv. Any type of self-made weapon that deserve to stab is a shank.

I’m not sure that this is the end of it.

I’ve just heard the indigenous on American prison-based TV-series and also only check out them in prison-related and also gang-related texts, and also then, both a shank and also a shiv space makeshift and made too as possible by the usage of crude materials.

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Regardless the vernacular, one must think about these things, especially prior to you opt come shiv or shank someone.