\ ˈkləŋk How to pronounce clunk (audio) \
clunked; clunking; clunks

Definition of clunk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to make a clunk
2 : to hit something with a clunk

transitive verb

: to strike or hit with a clunk



Definition of clunk (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a blow or the sound of a blow : thump
2 : a dull or stupid person

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Synonyms & Antonyms for clunk

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Noun

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Examples of clunk in a Sentence

Noun The book hit the floor with a loud clunk. don't be such a clunk and just get on with it
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Gone are the days of clunking heads together while sharing one pair of earbuds—not to mention having to scrape someone else’s earwax out of your tiny speaker grates. Wired, "How to Share Your iPhone Audio With a Friend," 24 Sep. 2019 The first programmable computer—if it were built—would have been a gigantic, mechanical thing clunking along with gears and levers and punch cards. Sarah Lewin Frasier, Scientific American, "In Celebration of Ada Lovelace, the First Computer Programmer," 14 Oct. 2015 Junis’ 10th pitch clunked Matt Chapman somewhere on the back of his head, sending his helmet flying and his teammates into a panic. Shayna Rubin, The Mercury News, "Matt Chapman avoids concussion protocol, but his presence was sorely missed in Athletics’ loss to Royals," 28 Aug. 2019 Then through the San Joaquin river delta, clunking over bridges and past houseboats. Carl Nolte,, "Who needs high-speed rail? California already has a slow train to nowhere," 29 June 2019 The sink stopper had clunked down, permanently closed, so some idiot (probably me) had yanked it out by his fingernails and placed it to the side. Chris Erskine,, "Man versus house: I repair something, then fix something else. The payoff? These ribs," 8 June 2018 This closer might just clunk up for third or fourth place. New York Times, "Kentucky Derby 2018: Odds and Our Experts’ Predictions," 4 May 2018 If the wind was blowing out, the ball might very well have clunked off the gigantic scoreboard that's now perched atop the ivy for a game-turning grand slam. Todd Rosiak, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Brewers just can't catch a break this season against the Cubs," 27 Apr. 2018 But the heavily armored green-and-yellow train that clunked its way into Beijing last week didn’t just bring the prospect of a high-stakes nuclear summit between North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and US President Trump a step closer. Ned Temko, The Christian Science Monitor, "Why the US undervalues nuts and bolts diplomacy at its peril," 2 Apr. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Cornering is sharp, but there will be clunks and bumps. Mark Maynard, San Diego Union-Tribune, "2019 VW Arteon: a cure for the common sedan," 6 Sep. 2019 Dior’s clog offering has snob appeal and the shoes are deceptively streamlined, despite their clunk. Madeline Fass, Vogue, "A Search for the Perfect Fall Clog, the Bookworm’s Fashion Shoe," 17 Oct. 2018 Also, my rides ended with an abrupt ka-clunk just before the trains proceeded to the station for unloading. Arthur Levine, USA TODAY, "Disneyland's new Pixar Pier: Is it Incredible?," 10 July 2018 The door swung open with a clunk and a screech, and cold clean air rushed into his lungs like the first breath after a storm. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "A transgender girl rises up against alien invaders in Rich Larson’s novel Annex," 8 July 2018 Throughout its two seasons, HBO’s Westworld has trotted out no shortage of bad guys, from robot gunslingers to mad inventors to dialog that sputters and clunks. Brian Barrett, WIRED, "Westworld’s Real Villain Has Always Been Its Privacy Policy," 24 June 2018 And after a short scuffle and clunks of heavy hooves on the ground, an opposing player smacks the ball with his mallet in between two posts. Brittany Britto,, "Saddle up: Maryland Polo Club celebrates 'sport of kings' with weekly matches, lively BritFest," 5 June 2018 The machine whirred and beeped for a moment, then the door slid open with a clunk, and a robotic arm dispensed the appropriate currency. Spud Hilton, San Francisco Chronicle, "High-tech Vegas: Is your hotel room smarter than you?," 3 May 2018 In Sindelfingen, Daimler’s airport-sized factory on the edge of Stuttgart, a vast assembly hall is uncannily quiet except for occasional clunks and whirrs. The Economist, "Germany’s conservative economic model is being put to the test," 12 Apr. 2018

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


circa 1796, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1823, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for clunk



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Time Traveler for clunk

Time Traveler

The first known use of clunk was circa 1796

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Statistics for clunk

Last Updated

19 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Clunk.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 5 December 2019.

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More Definitions for clunk



English Language Learners Definition of clunk

: a loud, dull sound that is made when a heavy object hits another object or a surface


\ ˈkləŋk How to pronounce clunk (audio) \

Kids Definition of clunk

: a loud dull sound

More from Merriam-Webster on clunk

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for clunk

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with clunk

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