Shifting backstays(Naut.), temporary stays that have to be let go whenever the vessel tacks or jibes.Shifting ballast, ballast which may be moved from one side of a vessel to another as safety requires.Shifting center. See Metacenter.Shifting locomotive. See Switching engine, under Switch.

(Shift"ing*ly), adv. In a shifting manner.

(Shift"less), a. Destitute of expedients, or not using successful expedients; characterized by failure, especially by failure to provide for one's own support, through negligence or incapacity; hence, lazy; improvident; thriftless; as, a shiftless fellow; shiftless management.Shift"less*ly, adv.Shift"less*ness, n.

(Shift"y) a. Full of, or ready with, shifts; fertile in expedients or contrivance. Wright.

Shifty and thrifty as old Greek or modern Scot, there were few things he could not invent, and perhaps nothing he could not endure.
C. Kingsley.

(Shi"ite Shi"ah) , n. [Ar. shi'aia follower of the sect of Ali, fr. shi'at, shi'ah, a multitude following one another in pursuit of the same object, the sect of Ali, fr. sha'a to follow.] A member of that branch of the Mohammedans to which the Persians belong. They reject the first three caliphs, and consider Ali as being the first and only rightful successor of Mohammed. They do not acknowledge the Sunna, or body of traditions respecting Mohammed, as any part of the law, and on these accounts are treated as heretics by the Sunnites, or orthodox Mohammedans.

(Shi*ka"ree, ||Shi*ka"ri) n. [Hind.] A sportsman; esp., a native hunter. [India]

(Shilf) n. [CF. G. shilf sedge.] Straw. [Obs.]

(Shill) v. t. To shell. [Obs. or Prov. Eng.]

(Shill), v. t. [Cf. Sheal.] To put under cover; to sheal. [] Brockett.

(Shil*la"lah, Shil*le"lah) n. An oaken sapling or cudgel; any cudgel; — so called from Shillelagh, a place in Ireland of that name famous for its oaks. [Irish] [Written also shillaly, and shillely.]

(Shil"ling) n. [OE. shilling, schilling, AS. scilling; akin to D. schelling, OS. & OHG. scilling, G. schilling, Sw. & Dan. skilling, Icel. skillingr, Goth. skilliggs, and perh. to OHG. scellan to sound, G. schallen.]

1. One who, or that which, shifts; one who plays tricks or practices artifice; a cozener.

'T was such a shifter that, if truth were known,
Death was half glad when he had got him down.

2. (Naut.) An assistant to the ship's cook in washing, steeping, and shifting the salt provisions.

3. (Mach.) (a) An arrangement for shifting a belt sidewise from one pulley to another. (b) (Knitting Mach.) A wire for changing a loop from one needle to another, as in narrowing, etc.

(Shift"i*ness), n. The quality or state of being shifty.

Diplomatic shiftiness and political versatility.
J. A. Syminds.

(Shift"ing), a.

1. Changing in place, position, or direction; varying; variable; fickle; as, shifting winds; shifting opinions or principles.

2. Adapted or used for shifting anything.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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