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shiv is a knife or sharp instrument used as a weapon in prison made from contraband materials. The plural form is shivs. The original spelling was chiv, a Romani word meaning blade, but this spelling has become obsolete.

As a verb shiv becomes shivs, shivving, and shivved. These forms are firmly rooted as slang, and as such do not appear in print publications too often. Though they may be more popular in speech.

Shiv is also a common male first name, after the Hindu god Shiva, the husband of the mother goddess. The Shiv Sena is a political organization in India.

shive, on the other hand, is a plug usually of ale casks. Its plural is shives. Not to be confused with chives, which is part of the onion family, but usually considered an herb, unlike green onions which are … onions.


Elsa gives Bette a shiv and plants the seed of spite that is probably going to lead to the beheading that everybody’s been predicting since the concept of Bette and Dot was announced. [Flavorwire]

Senior prison officials said the stash included 14 prison shivs (homemade knives), an iron bar and a syringe. [The Daily Telegraph]

But, as we found out, Angel was the mystery boss himself, duping the detectives by dealing with Joaquin through his car service and almost having Tino shivved to death in prison. [TV Fanatic]

Gaganjeet Bhullar and Jeev Milkha Singh made the cut at the KLM Open at Kennemer Golf & Country Club today but Shiv Kapur missed out. [NDTV Sports]