chunk

noun
\ ˈchəŋk How to pronounce chunk (audio) \

Definition of chunk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a short thick piece or lump (as of wood or coal)
2 : a large noteworthy quantity or part bet a sizable chunk of money on the race
3 : a strong thickset horse usually smaller than a draft horse
4 psychology : a unit of information retained in the memory and easily recalled The process of memorizing may be simply the formation of chunks, or groups of items that go together, until there are few enough chunks so that we can recall all the items.— Marilyn Sternglass A chunk represents a recoding of information. For example, the sequence 149217761941 would, for most of us, be a snap to remember. Almost automatically we'd recode the 12 digits into three chunks, 1492, 1776, 1941, all key dates in US history.— Robert Kanigel

chunk

verb
chunked; chunking; chunks

Definition of chunk (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to make a dull plunging or explosive sound the rhythmic chunking of thrown quoits— John Updike

transitive verb

1 : to mishit (a golf ball or shot) by striking the ground behind the ball
2 psychology : to organize (separate units of information) into a single large unit that is retained in the memory and easily recalled To recall a 10-digit telephone number, for instance, a person could chunk the digits into three groups: the area code (such as 021), then a three-digit chunk (639) and a four-digit chunk (4345).— Jonathan K. Foster

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Examples of chunk in a Sentence

Noun

She cut the fruit into large chunks. She spends a good chunk of her day on the phone. He devoted a large chunk of time to the project.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

For variety try adding pineapple chunks, berries or bananas. Claire Perez, sun-sentinel.com, "Claire’s tip of the week: Easy mango popsicles," 28 June 2019 Obviously a good chunk of time that will make things hard for the Warriors to collect wins. Mark Medina, The Mercury News, "Warriors mailbag: What’s the latest on Kevin Durant’s future?," 28 June 2019 This means that if the sale were to go take place, Jenner would still retain a solid chunk of ownership over her brand (49 percent to be exact). Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure, "Kylie Jenner Is Considering Selling Kylie Cosmetics, Says Report," 24 June 2019 Since a small number of drugs accounts for a major chunk of pharmaceutical spending, significantly lowering the price of even a few hundred drugs could go a long way toward lowering overall costs. Katie Thomas, New York Times, "Drug Prices Are a Populist Campaign Issue. Here Are the Latest Proposals to Lower Costs.," 16 June 2019 Some was being broken down into micro-plastics and remade into clothes, shoes, bags, and new plastic products, but a large chunk, found to be unusable or contaminated, was turning up in China’s fields and waterways. Crystal Reid, Popular Mechanics, "This Tiny Island Is Trying to Save the World. But Why?," 12 June 2019 The largest chunk of expenses paid by the general fund — the city’s primary operating fund — is made up of personnel costs, which total about $41.4 million. David Hernandez, San Diego Union-Tribune, "National City balances 2019-20 budget with fund balance," 6 June 2019 It can also be built in chunks, starting small and adding on the capacity as time goes on. Samuel Ayokunle Olowosejeje, Quartz Africa, "Nigeria’s unreliable electricity costs its economy $29 billion a year—solar power would save billions," 1 June 2019 Almost half of these gifts come from corporations and foundations, more than a quarter from non-alumni individuals, and a reliable chunk (around 25 percent) from alumni. Norman Vanamee, Town & Country, "Will the Admissions Cheating Scandal Hurt College Fundraising?," 29 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The ball was sitting on such tight grass that he easily could have chunked or skulled it. Daniel Rapaport, SI.com, "2019 U.S. Open Parting Thoughts: Woodland's Gutsy Win, Tiger's Showing and More," 17 June 2019 Clearly flustered, Spieth then chunked his third shot from the drop area into the water again. Daniel Rapaport, SI.com, "Best Masters Memories From the Past 20 Years: No. 5 - Spieth's Implosion at 12," 31 Mar. 2018 One particular motif has Camille driving around town, chunking the same Led Zeppelin tape into her car stereo. James Poniewozik, New York Times, "‘Sharp Objects,’ a Mesmerizing Southern Thriller, Cuts Slow but Deep," 5 July 2018 But the software can chunk them together in various ways to make possible letters. Sam Kean, The Atlantic, "Artificial Intelligence Is Unlocking the Vatican's Secret Archives," 30 Apr. 2018 The tree chunks Answer Man has seen have mostly been on telecommunications lines, which Jamerson said Pepco’s crews don’t touch. John Kelly, Washington Post, "Ever noticed chunks of trees on utility pole wires? What’s up with that?," 2 July 2018 Cruise boats take day trips to some of Southcentral Alaska's biggest and brightest glaciers, which send chunks the size of cars into the water with dramatic splashes. Josh Niva, Anchorage Daily News, "Getting your outdoor adventure fix in Southcentral Alaska," 2 May 2018 Top those with the protein (could be chunked or whole filet). Chris Morocco, Bon Appetit, "Ponzu Roasted Salmon for Two," 19 Mar. 2018 The skewers of pork belly were another beer cuisine winner, the tender chunks glazed in a sweet dark reduction of the colonial-theme spruce ale. Craig Laban, Philly.com, "Yards brewery is better, not just bigger, with move and ambitious new taproom," 23 Mar. 2018

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

Noun

1691, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1890, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for chunk

Noun

perhaps alteration of chuck short piece of wood

Verb

imitative

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Statistics for chunk

Last Updated

6 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for chunk

The first known use of chunk was in 1691

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More Definitions for chunk

chunk

noun

English Language Learners Definition of chunk

: a thick piece of something
somewhat informal : a large amount or part of something

chunk

noun
\ ˈchəŋk How to pronounce chunk (audio) \

Kids Definition of chunk

: a short thick piece a chunk of ice

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More from Merriam-Webster on chunk

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with chunk

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for chunk

Spanish Central: Translation of chunk

Nglish: Translation of chunk for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of chunk for Arabic Speakers

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