\ ˈchēk How to pronounce cheek (audio) \

Definition of cheek

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the fleshy side of the face below the eye and above and to the side of the mouth broadly : the lateral aspect of the head
2 : something suggestive of the human cheek in position or form especially : one of two laterally paired parts
3 : insolent boldness and self-assurance


cheeked; cheeking; cheeks

Definition of cheek (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

chiefly British
: to speak rudely or impudently to

Other Words from cheek


cheekful \ ˈchēk-​ˌfu̇l How to pronounce cheek (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for cheek


temerity, audacity, hardihood, effrontery, nerve, cheek, gall, chutzpah mean conspicuous or flagrant boldness. temerity suggests boldness arising from rashness and contempt of danger. had the temerity to refuse audacity implies a disregard of restraints commonly imposed by convention or prudence. an entrepreneur with audacity and vision hardihood suggests firmness in daring and defiance. admired for her hardihood effrontery implies shameless, insolent disregard of propriety or courtesy. outraged at his effrontery nerve, cheek, gall, and chutzpah are informal equivalents for effrontery. the nerve of that guy has the cheek to call herself a singer had the gall to demand proof the chutzpah needed for a career in show business

Examples of cheek in a Sentence

Noun He kissed her on the cheek. He's got a cheek ignoring us like that.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Luka Doncic emerged from Game 1 with a red streak across his right cheek, nagging pain in his right shoulder and strikingly pedestrian numbers. Ron Kroichick, San Francisco Chronicle, 18 May 2022 Jurors were shown a series of photos of Heard’s face with a bruise on her right cheek. Gene Maddaus, Variety, 16 May 2022 Bredehoft showed the jury photos of different angles and different lighting of what Heard said was her face after the incident, which showed a red mark on her cheek and a bruise near her eye. Emily Yahr, Washington Post, 16 May 2022 His chest hurt, his lymph nodes and jaw were inflamed, the soft tissues inside his right cheek were shredded and his wrists were still raw from being tied. Isabel Coles, WSJ, 15 May 2022 Though nothing about the caption explicitly describes the nature of her relationship with Pelphrey, 39, the final image in Cuoco's carousel shows Pelphrey pecking her cheek. Sam Reed, Glamour, 4 May 2022 Maybe Slider could start wearing a a monocle and draw a fake fencing scar on his cheek. Paul Hoynes, cleveland, 30 Apr. 2022 Lyoya’s mother, Dorcas, sobbed as mourners filed in pay their respects, and tears ran down her cheek as live music played and a choir sang. David Eggert And Mike Householder, Chicago Tribune, 22 Apr. 2022 The roommate suffered a deep cut on his left cheek and a deep cut on the left side of his head. Antonio Planas, NBC News, 7 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The line, out March 21, comprises eight product types: eye shadow palettes, potted gel eye shadows, eye gloss, false eyelashes, cheek and lip stains, a face mist, and a makeup primer just for the undereyes. Allure, 16 Mar. 2022 There's also support for Spotify Tap, a relatively new feature that lets subscribers of that streaming service directly launch the app and swap between playlists with a few button (or cheek, in this case) presses. Jeff Dunn, Ars Technica, 15 Feb. 2022 The department posted photos of the small brown and black mammal crouching fearfully in a mesh crate after capture, with bloody wounds on its nose, cheek and forehead. Tiffini Theisen,, 18 Jan. 2022 The collection, available on Amazon, features eyeliner, lip glazes, cheek and lip tints, highlighter, and a set of mini lipsticks. Christina Butan,, 24 Nov. 2021 Because many of the questions will be subjective, the researchers think the city should push the envelope and take hair or fingernail samples and saliva or cheek swabs from participants to measure their levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Rebecca Lurye,, 1 Nov. 2021 People were seen dining al fresco and sunbathing, cheek to jowl. New York Times, 21 July 2021 One of my favorite Huggs-Era memories is of the 6-5 Martin slam-dancing chest to cheek with North Carolina’s 7-foot center Eric Montross in an Elite 8 game the Bearcats almost stole. Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, 12 Apr. 2021 Some testing sites may ask you to swab your nose or cheek yourself, or spit into a tube. Sarah Krouse, WSJ, 3 Sep. 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of cheek


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1840, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cheek


Middle English cheke, from Old English cēace; akin to Middle Low German kāke jawbone

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Time Traveler for cheek

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The first known use of cheek was before the 12th century

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Last Updated

23 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Cheek.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for cheek


\ ˈchēk How to pronounce cheek (audio) \

Kids Definition of cheek

1 : the side of the face below the eye and above and to the side of the mouth
2 : disrespectful speech or behavior He was punished for his cheek.


\ ˈchēk \

Medical Definition of cheek

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the fleshy side of the face below the eye and above and to the side of the mouth broadly : the lateral aspect of the head


transitive verb

Medical Definition of cheek (Entry 2 of 2)

: to conceal (medication) in the cheek for future use On March 29, two days before she committed suicide, the staff found she had been "cheeking medications" to save them for a later overdose …— Michael O'D. Moore, The Bangor (Maine) Daily News

More from Merriam-Webster on cheek

Nglish: Translation of cheek for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cheek for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about cheek


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