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noun \ˈshaŋk\

Simple Definition of shank

  • : the straight, narrow part of a tool that connects the part that does the work with the part that you hold

  • : a piece of meat cut from the upper part of the leg

  • : the part of the leg between the knee and the ankle

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of shank

  1. 1a :  the part of the leg between the knee and the ankle in humans or the corresponding part in various other vertebratesb :  legc :  a cut of beef, veal, mutton, or lamb from the upper or the lower part of the leg :  shin — see beef illustration

  2. 2 :  a straight narrow usually essential part of an object: asa :  the straight part of a nail or pinb :  a straight part of a plant :  stem, stalkc :  the part of an anchor between the ring and the crown — see anchor illustrationd :  the part of a fishhook between the eye and the bende :  the part of a key between the handle and the bitf :  the stem of a tobacco pipe or the part between the stem and the bowlg :  tang 1h (1) :  the narrow part of the sole of a shoe beneath the instep (2) :  shankpiece

  3. 3 :  a part of an object by which it can be attached: asa (1) :  a projection on the back of a solid button (2) :  a short stem of thread that holds a sewn button away from the clothb :  the end (as of a drill bit) that is gripped in a chuck

  4. 4a :  the latter part of a period of timeb :  the early or main part of a period of time <11 p.m. on the East coast is merely the shank of the evening on the West coast>

  5. 5 slang :  an often homemade knife


play \ˈshaŋ(k)t\ adjective

Examples of shank in a sentence

  1. the shank of a drill bit

  2. <slashed at the prison guard with a shank he had secretly made from a scrap of metal>

Origin and Etymology of shank

Middle English shanke, from Old English scanca; akin to Old Norse skakkr crooked, Greek skazein to limp

First Known Use: before 12th century



transitive verb

Definition of shank

  1. :  to hit (a golf ball or shot) with the extreme heel of the club so that the ball goes off in an unintended direction; also :  to kick (a football) in an unintended direction


First Known Use of shank


Other Field and Goal Sports Terms

SHANK Defined for Kids


noun \ˈshaŋk\

Definition of shank for Students

  1. 1 :  the part of the leg between the knee and ankle

  2. 2 :  a cut of meat from the usually upper part of the leg <a lamb shank>

  3. 3 :  the part of a tool that connects the working part with a part by which it is held or moved <the shank of a drill bit>

Medical Dictionary


noun \ˈshaŋk\

Medical Definition of shank

  1. :  the part of the leg between the knee and the ankle in humans or a corresponding part in other vertebrates

Seen and Heard

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a very small amount

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