butcher

noun
butch·​er | \ ˈbu̇-chər How to pronounce butcher (audio) \

Definition of butcher

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a person who slaughters animals or dresses their flesh
b : a dealer in meat
2 : one that kills ruthlessly or brutally
3 : one that bungles or botches
4 : a vendor especially on trains or in theaters

butcher

verb
butchered; butchering\ ˈbu̇ch-​riŋ How to pronounce butcher (audio) , ˈbu̇-​chə-​ \

Definition of butcher (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to slaughter and dress for market butcher hogs
2 : to kill in a barbarous manner
3 : botch butchered the play

Examples of butcher in a Sentence

Noun the newest intern on the campaign is a butcher when it comes to writing press releases Verb They've hired someone to butcher the hogs. Many innocent people were butchered under his regime. The band has butchered my favorite song.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Sackett’s Table is an artisanal butcher attached to a restaurant, a farm-to-table experiment in a valley of brewpubs. New York Times, 5 Nov. 2021 Her father was a butcher; her mother was a bookkeeper. Mattie Kahn, Glamour, 2 Nov. 2021 Belcampo’s Santa Monica, Calif. restaurant and butcher shop also appears to be gone too. Jeremy Repanich, Robb Report, 19 Oct. 2021 Fernald started Belcampo in Larkspur in 2012 and created a mini empire of butcher shops and restaurants in Northern and Southern California. Elena Kadvany, San Francisco Chronicle, 19 Oct. 2021 Wilson is a butcher who ultimately wants people to eat less meat. Alicia Wallace, CNN, 17 Oct. 2021 Causey was the butcher, and McMillan worked the front counter. Bob Carlton | Bcarlton@al.com, al, 6 Oct. 2021 Reiner alleged Belcampo marked up meat from other producers and sold it as its own in the restaurant and butcher shop. Los Angeles Times, 10 June 2021 San Ho Won will serve, for example, a kimchi pozole — a mashup of Korean and Mexican food traditions, inspired by San Ho Won’s location in the Mission and the restaurant’s longtime butcher, Luis Perez, who often makes pozole for staff meal. Elena Kadvany, San Francisco Chronicle, 3 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb To help meet that goal, Jensen plans to butcher some of his cows and sell the meat. Mark Eddington, The Salt Lake Tribune, 25 Oct. 2021 Readers wrote in or telephoned with their domestic queries, which could be anything from how to remove a stain from a carpet to how to starch a shirt collar or how to butcher a chicken — anything to do with running a home. Annabel Abbs, Good Housekeeping, 26 Oct. 2021 To butcher Tolstoy, each hungry customer is hungry in their own way. Washington Post, 8 Oct. 2021 A month before the pageant, her mother hired a teacher to show her how to butcher. David Kelly, Los Angeles Times, 6 Oct. 2021 The three contestants had to showcase how to traditionally butcher a sheep and how to prepare traditional food. Shondiin Silversmith, The Arizona Republic, 15 Sep. 2021 Elders from the community come and give their blessings and teach younger members how to harvest and butcher the meat, turning the bison into sustenance, and using all parts of the animal for other ceremonial and cultural purposes. Louise Johns, Wired, 12 June 2021 Finding someone who won’t butcher your trees, harm your landscaping or rip off your gutters will take some work. Washington Post, 7 July 2021 Elders from the community come and give their blessings and teach younger members how to harvest and butcher the meat, turning the bison into sustenance, and using all parts of the animal for other ceremonial and cultural purposes. Louise Johns, Wired, 12 June 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'butcher.' 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 butcher

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1562, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for butcher

Noun

Middle English bocher, from Anglo-French, from buc he-goat, probably of Celtic origin; akin to Middle Irish bocc he-goat — more at buck entry 1

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Time Traveler for butcher

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near butcher

butch

butcher

butcher's-broom

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Statistics for butcher

Last Updated

23 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Butcher.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/butcher. Accessed 28 Nov. 2021.

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More Definitions for butcher

butcher

noun

English Language Learners Definition of butcher

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: someone who cuts and sells meat in a shop
: someone who kills animals and prepares their meat to be eaten
: a shop that sells meat

butcher

verb

English Language Learners Definition of butcher (Entry 2 of 2)

: to kill (an animal) and prepare its meat for sale
: to kill (people or animals) in a brutal and cruel way
: to do (something) very badly : to make a mess of (something)

butcher

noun
butch·​er | \ ˈbu̇-chər How to pronounce butcher (audio) \

Kids Definition of butcher

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person whose business is killing animals for sale as food
2 : a dealer in meat
3 : a person who kills in large numbers or in a brutal manner

butcher

verb
butchered; butchering

Kids Definition of butcher (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to kill and prepare (an animal) for food
3 : to make a mess of : botch I let my mother cut my hair and she butchered it.

More from Merriam-Webster on butcher

Nglish: Translation of butcher for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of butcher for Arabic Speakers

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