noun \ˈshaŋk\

: 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

Full Definition of SHANK

a :  the part of the leg between the knee and the ankle in humans or the corresponding part in various other vertebrates
b :  leg
c :  a cut of beef, veal, mutton, or lamb from the upper or the lower part of the leg :  shin — see beef illustration
:  a straight narrow usually essential part of an object: as
a :  the straight part of a nail or pin
b :  a straight part of a plant :  stem, stalk
c :  the part of an anchor between the ring and the crown — see anchor illustration
d :  the part of a fishhook between the eye and the bend
e :  the part of a key between the handle and the bit
f :  the stem of a tobacco pipe or the part between the stem and the bowl
g :  tang 1
h (1) :  the narrow part of the sole of a shoe beneath the instep
(2) :  shankpiece
:  a part of an object by which it can be attached: as
a (1) :  a projection on the back of a solid button
(2) :  a short stem of thread that holds a sewn button away from the cloth
b :  the end (as of a drill bit) that is gripped in a chuck
a :  the latter part of a period of time
b :  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>
slang :  an often homemade knife
shanked \ˈshaŋ(k)t\ adjective

Examples of SHANK

  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 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

Other Anatomy Terms

bilateral symmetry, carotid, cartilage, dorsal, entrails, prehensile, renal, solar plexus, supine, thoracic, ventral


transitive verb

Definition of SHANK

:  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

crease, lateral, lax, overthrow, playbook, post, screen, scrum, secondary, ultimate
SHANK Defined for Kids


noun \ˈshaŋk\

Definition of SHANK for Kids

:  the part of the leg between the knee and ankle
:  a cut of meat from the usually upper part of the leg <a lamb shank>
:  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

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


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