\ ˈkrēk How to pronounce creak (audio) \
creaked; creaking; creaks

Definition of creak

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to make a prolonged grating or squeaking sound often as a result of being worn-out also : to proceed slowly with or as if with creaking wheels the story creaks along to a dull conclusion



Definition of creak (Entry 2 of 2)

: a rasping or grating noise

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Synonyms for creak

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of creak in a Sentence

Verb The old floorboards creaked under our feet. The porch roof creaked with the heavy weight of the snow. Noun the creak of a floorboard
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Borden devotees will delight to know that its worn wood railings, dangerously creaking chairs in the spectators gallery and peeling paint suggest the place hasn’t been refurbished since the first day of Lizzie’s trial on June 5, 1893. Andrea Simakis, cleveland, "Did she or didn’t she? On the bloody trail of Lizzie Borden in Fall River, Mass.," 20 Oct. 2019 The planet creaks underfoot, a gigantic cog, hurling you forward through Cartesian space at 950 miles an hour. Paul Salopek, National Geographic, "Following a river of questions in eastern India," 16 Oct. 2019 In two decades Britain’s Eurofighter Typhoons will be retiring and the fifth-generation F-35 Lightning will be creaking at the joints. The Economist, "Britain’s Tempest warplane heads for a dogfight with an EU rival," 19 Sep. 2019 Eventually, the building creaked and came to a stop. Los Angeles Times, "Earthquake shook L.A. skyscrapers so hard some got vertigo," 15 Aug. 2019 Nadal was creaking entering the fifth set, but in one of the two key games of the fifth, saved three break chances at 0-1. Ravi Ubha, CNN, "Nadal edges Medvedev to win fourth US Open and 19th major, only one behind Federer," 9 Sep. 2019 Inspectors in bullet-proof vests picked their way along creaking floorboards, taking inventory of conveyor belts, compressors, and bandsaw blades. Felipe Fittipaldi, National Geographic, "Inside the faltering fight against illegal Amazon logging," 28 Aug. 2019 Initially, Markham hoped to gut, remodel and open the space in six to eight months, but the project was stymied with problems related to the aging building, including wood rot, water damage, creaking timbers, a leaky roof. Pam Kragen, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Long-delayed Windmill Food Hall set to open this weekend," 30 Aug. 2019 As Kuforiji began to consecrate the bread and wine, kneeling cushions creaked as worshippers pulled them down from the pews., "Reverence and resistance in one of Portland’s oldest Catholic churches," 11 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The almost $90 million project, which officially kicks off Thursday with a groundbreaking ceremony, will replace aging facilities such as a main administration tower more than 50 years old that leaks and creaks. Joseph Geha, The Mercury News, "Newark to break ground on nearly $90 million civic center project," 7 Aug. 2019 The only sound was the creak of their pedals, echoing off the facades. Caleb Crain, Harper's magazine, "Talkin’ ’Bout a Revolution," 22 July 2019 Meanwhile, the soundscape of Sophia Nearhood and Samantha Murphey was a headache-inducing electronic clash of grinds, crunches and creaks, often sounding like an earthquake in progress with volume level to match. Rob Hubbard, Twin Cities, "Review: ‘Momentum’ offers mixed dance visions, one exciting, one taxing," 12 July 2019 Leonard could run the risk of spending his prime with a creak supporting cast as Milwaukee and Philadelphia ride their youngsters to the conference crown. Michael Shapiro,, "Five Big Questions Surrounding Kawhi Leonard's NBA Free Agency," 25 June 2019 Sound designer Matt Reed mixed the actors’ voices with sounds that evoked the narratives, like the tinkle of a wine glass on a first date, or the mechanical creaks of a plane in a deep dive to the ground. Nora Mcgreevy,, "‘Modern Love Live’ brings reflections on mortality, platonic love, and emergency room visits," 18 June 2019 What would a scary movie be without the ominous creak of floorboards? Sound effects—called Foley—add crucial value to any film. Annie Martin, National Geographic, "Can you match these tools to the movie sound effects they make?," 12 June 2019 Mensore dedicates his scant resources to creating a visceral experience, emphasizing the lack of visibility, the gassy haze and the constant, terrifying creaks and moans underground. Noel Murray,, "Reviews: Harrowing disaster thriller ‘Mine 9’; Scott Adkins in ‘Abduction’; and more," 6 June 2019 And finally—alone with her former careful way of living—she’d notice each creak of wood, keep an eye on the roses growing in the garden, do quick laps, and give sharp cries of recognition. Benjamin Moser, Harper's magazine, "The Indirect World," 10 Apr. 2019

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


1583, in the meaning defined above


1604, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for creak


Middle English creken to croak, of imitative origin

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Statistics for creak

Last Updated

13 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for creak

The first known use of creak was in 1583

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More Definitions for creak


How to pronounce creak (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of creak

: to make a long, high sound : to make a sound like the sound made by an old door when it opens or closes


\ ˈkrēk How to pronounce creak (audio) \
creaked; creaking

Kids Definition of creak

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make a long scraping or squeaking sound The stairs creaked … with every step.— Astrid Lindgren, Pippi Longstocking



Kids Definition of creak (Entry 2 of 2)

: a long squeaking or scraping noise

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More from Merriam-Webster on creak

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for creak

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with creak

Spanish Central: Translation of creak

Nglish: Translation of creak for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of creak for Arabic Speakers

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