Definition of shoehorn in English:


Pronunciation /ˈSHo͞oˌhôrn/ /ˈʃuˌhɔrn/

Translate shoehorn into Spanish


  • A curved instrument used to ease one's heel into a shoe.

    ‘Use a long-handled shoehorn if you have trouble putting on shoes.’
    • ‘The firm buys cow horn, which is a by-product of the meat industry, and uses it to produce items such as spoons, walking sticks and shoehorns.’
    • ‘Aids include shoehorns with an extension handle, devices that help you pull up hosiery, shoes you close with Velcro rather than with shoelaces, and tools that grip buttons and zippers.’
    • ‘We also supply intimate items - shoehorns, toothbrushes and toothpaste - and our laundry bags are linen, not plastic.’
    • ‘The sparkling clean room has four lockers, each with wooden coat hangers, a lower compartment for shoes, with complimentary shoehorn, and an upper compartment for personal effects.’
    • ‘If you look at the bag with a transmitted x-ray, you can make out various things - a radio, a shoehorn, shaving cream.’
    • ‘And when buses finally arrive, they are often packed so full of people that we wish our Metropasses had come equipped with a shoehorn.’
    • ‘Kisembo is wearing green rubber boots and has brought, as a symbol of his power, a shoehorn adorned with a lion's head.’
    • ‘The average airline ticket in the U.S. should come with a shoehorn to help wedge you into the seat.’
    • ‘My laptop, my picture ID and credit cards, a shoehorn, a small flashlight, and a good book to read - are just a few other must-haves.’
    • ‘Finding a comfortable spot for a nap in a passenger terminal is like trying to find a Bedouin shoehorn salesman.’
    • ‘After much struggling and battling with the shoehorn he finally got the shoes on.’
    • ‘Whoever wins is going to need a really big shoehorn.’


with object and adverbial
  • Force into an inadequate space.

    ‘people were shoehorned into cramped corners’
    • ‘A traditional marriage will be most advantageous for the blushing groom, but it's not the oppressive males who are forcing us up that aisle, or shoehorning us into white meringues.’
    • ‘Curious tourists gathered on Edinburgh's Royal Mile as volunteers, some climbing into the roof of the booth, others sitting on each other, slowly shoehorned themselves into the tiny space.’
    • ‘I find it much better than shoehorning e-mail through a WAP browser.’
    • ‘Parliamentarians are also accused of disastrously shoehorning the works into inappropriate settings which fail to show them to their best advantage.’
    • ‘Having invented this sequence, he spends the rest of the paragraph shoehorning events into the stages.’
    • ‘We have a long list of businesses which are shoehorned into premises which aren't suitable for their needs.’
    • ‘They shoehorned some of them in but the British travellers clearly felt that it smacked of tokenism.’
    • ‘But the sport also cannot be shoehorned into an ideal mold of globalization, even as globalization cannot quite set its foot straight in world soccer.’
    • ‘Certainly there is a great variety of experiences, skills and knowledge for students to gain from work terms that could not be shoehorned into specific courses.’
    • ‘They are allowed a few bolstering bits of flimsy cloth to try to retain an air of modesty despite being shoehorned into bras that are less about pushing up, and more about throwing out.’
    • ‘A grand piano is shoehorned into the rectangular room, bay-fronted on to a hill of semi-detached houses on the south Essex coast.’
    • ‘It's illogical, he says: feet splay out towards the ends, yet women's fashion demands that toes be shoehorned into a point.’
    • ‘The book lacks a discography but just about everything else, relevant or otherwise, is shoehorned into these 738 pages.’
    • ‘Half of the proposed new homes will be shoehorned into the current school site which is a protected recreational site in the centre and at the heart of our village.’
    • ‘There are better things - deeper and more resonant themes, and more complex and more enriching ideas - which can't or shouldn't be shoehorned into this inflexible storytelling model.’
    • ‘So-called psychics frequently shoehorn events to fit vague statements they made in the past.’
    • ‘These snippets of genetic material shoehorn themselves into a variety of spots in a host's DNA.’
    • ‘Why shoehorn all the pupils into one site when there is ample space at the former Middle School on Valley Drive?’
    • ‘The last thing we want to do is shoehorn into a venue simply to create a presence in the city.’