buck·​et | \ ˈbə-kət How to pronounce bucket (audio) \

Definition of bucket

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a typically cylindrical vessel for catching, holding, or carrying liquids or solids
2 : something resembling a bucket: such as
a : the scoop of an excavating machine
b : one of the receptacles on the rim of a waterwheel
c : one of the cups of an endless-belt conveyor
d : one of the vanes of a turbine rotor


bucketed; bucketing; buckets

Definition of bucket (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to draw or lift in buckets
2 British
a : to ride (a horse) hard
b : to drive hurriedly or roughly
3 : to deal with in a bucket shop

intransitive verb

2a : to move about haphazardly or irresponsibly
b : to move roughly or jerkily
3 chiefly British, informal : to rain very heavily : pour It doesn't just rain here. It pours; it lashes; it buckets.— Kathleen A. Quinn usually used with downRain bucketed down for the next two days …— Thurston Clarke

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Examples of bucket in a Sentence

Noun We used two buckets of paint to paint the living room. made buckets of money in the stock market Verb bucketing water from the well, we raced to put out the fire getting the troops into the bucketing landing craft proved to be challenging
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Just remember that asking for a dump bucket might cause a double take. Chris Macias, SFChronicle.com, "Concannon: leave your inner wine snob at the door," 3 Aug. 2020 Then George Hill stumbled through the lane and lost the ball, leading to a run out and an easy bucket for Robert Covington at the other end, cutting the Bucks' lead to one. Matt Velazquez, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Rockets 120, Bucks 116: Late rally marred by careless finish," 2 Aug. 2020 Betty Vaquera Escandon shared a video to Facebook of her parents floating a bucket full of puppies through the floodwaters in the city of Reynosa. Fox News, "Couple in Mexico who lost 'everything' in Hanna flooding rescue their puppies from floodwaters," 30 July 2020 In time he was caught red-handed with a flat of night crawlers and hit bottom when he was photographed, grinning, with a stringer of walleyes in each hand, a minnow bucket at his feet. Star Tribune, "Restoring and casting centuries-old salmon rods helps keep pandemic at bay," 30 July 2020 First, fill a pan or bucket in the sink (or the sink itself) with cold water. Laura Kostelny, Country Living, "Help! How Long Does It Take to Thaw a Turkey?," 23 July 2020 Each bambi bucket can carry 420 gallons of water, so HSC-3 has probably dropped a total of 672,000 gallons (5.3 million pounds) of water. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The USS Bonhomme Richard Is Still Burning," 16 July 2020 Along a more soothing register, White Paint features a light blue paint bucket overflowing with white paint. John Zotos, Dallas News, "Lance Letscher’s collages compel us to ponder our place within the natural world," 9 July 2020 Fill a bucket with warm water and biodegradable detergent – some bike mechanics use a dish soap like Dawn for its ability to cut grease on chains and chainrings. USA Today, "6 things to check when resurrecting your bike for riding in the time of coronavirus," 7 July 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb East Boston 34, Boston English 23 — Junior guard Madison Theriault bucketed 18 points for the Jets (4-9). Mike Puzzanghera, BostonGlobe.com, "Sophomore Jaeden Greenleaf scores 1,000th point in Cape Cod Academy’s win over Martha’s Vineyard in boys’ basketball," 30 Jan. 2020 To travelers, Arizona is known for some of the Southwest's most iconic vacation destinations—from sprawling golf and tennis facilities to innovative wellness retreats to bucket-list natural attractions. Chadner Navarro, Fortune, "Arizona’s very first luxury resort—originally opened in 1896—is back in business," 28 Jan. 2020 Senior Zakiirah King put up a team-leading nine points while senior Victoria Davis put up eight and junior Samara Curry bucketed seven. Edith Noriega, azcentral, "Hamilton clinches a win over Mountain Pointe in Hoophall West Tournament," 4 Dec. 2019 Meanwhile, the fashion crowd has been photographed wearing teddy jackets in every color, print, length, and shape; some even raised the stakes with teddy accessories, from bucket bags to bucket hats. Georgina Kim, Glamour, "How to Wear the Teddy Trend This Fall and Winter," 11 Nov. 2019 The age of Mobile Money 2.0 What used to be defined as mobile banking, mobile money, USSD based banking et al, will soon be bucketed into one general descriptor in the age of Mobile Money 2.0. Wiza Jalakasi, Quartz Africa, "After years of rapid growth in Africa we’re about to enter the age of Mobile Money 2.0," 4 Oct. 2019 But in a storm of Harvey's sheer monstrousness – hundreds of miles across, lingering for days with bucketing rain that swallowed roads and initially kept rescue aircraft grounded – no government response could ever have been enough. Author: Kevin Sullivan, Peter Holley, Alaska Dispatch News, "Texans’ do-it-ourselves rescue effort defines Hurricane Harvey," 3 Sep. 2017 But in a storm of Harvey’s sheer monstrousness — hundreds of miles across, lingering for days with bucketing rain that swallowed roads and initially kept rescue aircraft grounded — no government response could ever have been enough. Kevin Sullivan, Washington Post, "Texans’ do-it-ourselves rescue effort defines Hurricane Harvey," 2 Sep. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bucket.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bucket


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1640, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for bucket


Middle English, from Anglo-French buket, from Old English būc pitcher, belly; akin to Old High German būh belly

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Time Traveler for bucket

Time Traveler

The first known use of bucket was in the 13th century

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Statistics for bucket

Last Updated

8 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Bucket.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bucket. Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for bucket


How to pronounce bucket (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of bucket

: an open container with a handle that is used especially to hold and carry water and other liquids
: the amount contained in a bucket
: a large container that is part of a machine (such as a tractor) and that is used for digging or carrying dirt, rocks, and other material


buck·​et | \ ˈbə-kət How to pronounce bucket (audio) \

Kids Definition of bucket

1 : a usually round container with a handle for holding or carrying liquids or solids
2 : a large container that is part of a machine and is used for collecting, scooping, or carrying
3 : bucketful a bucket of water sweating buckets

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More from Merriam-Webster on bucket

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bucket

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bucket

Spanish Central: Translation of bucket

Nglish: Translation of bucket for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bucket for Arabic Speakers

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