\ ˈkȯrk How to pronounce cork (audio) \

Definition of cork

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : the elastic tough outer tissue of the cork oak that is used especially for stoppers and insulation
b : phellem
2 : a usually cork stopper for a bottle or jug
3 : a fishing float


corked; corking; corks

Definition of cork (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to furnish or fit with cork or a cork
2 : to stop up with a cork cork a bottle
3 : to blacken with burnt cork corked faces


geographical name
\ ˈkȯrk How to pronounce Cork (audio) \

Definition of Cork (Entry 3 of 3)

1 county of southwestern Ireland in Munster bordering on the Celtic Sea area 2880 square miles (7459 square kilometers), population 399,802
2 city and port at head of Cork Harbor, Ireland population 198,582

Note: The city of Cork is the capital of the county of Cork.

Examples of cork in a Sentence

Noun the cork of a wine bottle Verb a corked bottle of wine a player who has been accused of illegally corking his bats
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Both producers and consumers still love natural cork. Per And Britt Karlsson, Forbes, 29 Dec. 2021 By 2024, the group aims to replace windows, elevators, and doors, and install new ventilation systems and natural cork insulation. Lindsey Mcginnis, The Christian Science Monitor, 22 Nov. 2021 The Wall Pops cork boards are a great option when aesthetics are of utmost importance. Popular Science, 17 Sep. 2020 Some nice reds are also being caught drifting shrimp under a slip cork under the bridge on moving tides. Frank Sargeant, al, 3 Dec. 2021 This two-part device combines a traditional spiral corkscrew with a dual-pronged ah-so cork remover. Washington Post, 18 Nov. 2021 Inside, the sneaker has a vegan insole made from cork, bio memory foam, and organic mamona oil that provides arch support and ample cushioning for all-day comfort. Eva Thomas,, 31 Aug. 2021 Anglers fishing around the Dauphin Island Bridge are scoring by drifting live shrimp through the pilings below a slip cork. Frank Sargeant, al, 28 Nov. 2021 The interior emphasizes sustainable materials with cork and fabric trim. Mark Phelan, Detroit Free Press, 8 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Then re-cork or cover the opening of the bottle and give it a little shake. Amelia Goe, The Arizona Republic, 2 July 2021 Fielding, a cloud over his head, is assigned to cork the leak. John Anderson, WSJ, 13 Apr. 2021 Once upended, the sediment falls into the neck of the bottle, which is then briefly frozen so when the cap is removed the frozen plug of sediment is expelled by the carbonation of the wine; the bottle is then corked. Florence Fabricant, New York Times, 5 May 2020 Stacked in neat piles beneath the remnants of the 19th-century building’s stairs were several hundred bottles, some still corked and full of sloshing fluid. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, 26 Mar. 2020 Maybe players didn’t want to pop amphetamines, cork their bats, scuff up the baseballs or take steroids, but these were trends, producing great results. Bruce Jenkins,, 17 Jan. 2020 Ruby is gripped with fear every time fireworks go off or when a bottle is corked open, essentially whenever anything sounds like gunshots—making the season’s opening New Year’s Eve party particularly difficult for him. Candice Frederick, Teen Vogue, 3 Apr. 2019 An open bottle of Champagne has the lifespan of a mayfly: Unlike red or white wine, there’s no corking it and saving it for cooking. Alexandra Kleeman, WSJ, 28 Dec. 2018 For example, a wine that’s corked is often said to smell like a damp basement or wet dog, while a wine that’s too old is generally described as dusty and dried out, all tannin, no fruit. Lettie Teague, WSJ, 27 Sep. 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1535, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cork


Middle English, cork, bark, probably from Middle Dutch *kurk or Middle Low German korck, from Old Spanish alcorque, ultimately from dialect Arabic qurq, from Latin quercus oak — more at fir

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The first known use of cork was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

24 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Cork.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for cork


\ ˈkȯrk How to pronounce cork (audio) \

Kids Definition of cork

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the light but tough material that is the outer layer of bark of a tree ( cork oak ) and is used especially for stoppers and insulation
2 : a stopper for a bottle or jug


corked; corking

Kids Definition of cork (Entry 2 of 2)

: to stop with a stopper cork a bottle


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