\ ˈfȯrk How to pronounce fork (audio) \

Definition of fork

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an implement with two or more prongs used especially for taking up (as in eating), pitching, or digging
2 : a forked part, tool, or piece of equipment
3a : a division into branches or the place where something divides into branches
4 : one of the branches into which something forks
5 : an attack by one chess piece (such as a knight) on two pieces simultaneously


forked; forking; forks

Definition of fork (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to divide into two or more branches where the road forks
2a : to use or work with a fork
b : to turn into a fork

transitive verb

1 : to give the form of a fork to forking her fingers
2 : to attack (two chessmen) simultaneously
3 : to raise, pitch, dig, or work with a fork fork hay
4 : pay, contribute used with over, out, or up had to fork over $5000

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Other Words from fork


forkful \ ˈfȯrk-​ˌfu̇l How to pronounce forkful (audio) \ noun


forker noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for fork

Synonyms: Verb

branch (out), diverge, divide, part, separate, spread

Antonyms: Verb

converge, join

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Examples of fork in a Sentence


a fork in the road the north fork of the river the front fork of a bicycle


The road forks to the north and south. They forked the hay into the loft.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Korbee suggesting scrambling with a fork instead of a whisk because a whisk tends to incorporate more air—which could make the eggs too foamy and bubbly and the overall texture too airy. Audrey Bruno, SELF, "6 Tips to Make Perfect Scrambled Eggs," 3 May 2019 Return the pan to the oven and cook until a fork easily shreds the meat, 2 hours 30 minutes to 3 hours more. Krystyna Chávez, Marie Claire, "9 Easy Kentucky Derby Recipe Ideas You Can Whip Up In No Time," 3 May 2019 Open them up, grab some forks, and try to guess what each item is. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "25 Fun Challenges to Play With Your Friends," 27 Nov. 2018 Fluff with fork, then toss with lime juice and remaining 1/2 tablespoon oil and fold in scallions, cilantro and lime zest. The Good Housekeeping Test Kitchen, Good Housekeeping, "Spiced Sesame Chicken with Carrots and Couscous," 17 Aug. 2018 Spatulas, forks and tongs are laser cut or engraved with the licensed logos of your favorite teams from college, NFL, MLB, NHL and branches of the military. Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp, Indianapolis Star, "The Hoosier Gardener: Grillin' gifts for the dad in your life," 8 June 2018 Flake 2 leftover codfish fillets with a fork into a medium bowl. Country Living, "Codfish Cakes," 21 Jan. 2010 Cut in cold butter with a pastry blender or fork until coarse crumbs form. Kate Merker, Country Living, "Ham Biscuit Sandwiches With Apricot Mustard," 18 Mar. 2019 Alas, my passion for the creamy chicken crepe far exceeded that for the forks. Alex Witchel, Town & Country, "The Best Department Stores Are All Opening Restaurants," 25 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Photo by Vjeran Pavic / The Verge Early Riders One question for the success of Waymo One is whether Early Riders will be willing to start forking over money for the service. Andrew J. Hawkins, The Verge, "Riding in Waymo One, the Google spinoff’s first self-driving taxi service," 5 Dec. 2018 Another on the site is trying to get a buyer to fork over a whopping $507,000. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Hold On, Is the Princess Diana Beanie Baby Really Worth Six Figures?," 3 Nov. 2018 If there is a charge and that other person will be driving, this is the time to fork over the extra money just to be safe. Catharine Hamm,, "What you need to know about your driver's license and your car rental before you hit the road," 21 May 2018 Even with pay, interns will still be forced to fork over much of the $10,000 required for a summer internship, a sum that isn’t in the cards for many. Audrey Henson, Vox, "Diversity on Capitol Hill starts with paying interns," 26 Dec. 2018 Ringside tickets to Wrestlemania can cost more than $700, and fans who want to sit front row at an upcoming NJPW show in San Francisco will need to fork over $300. Brandon Howard,, "7 things to know about 'All In' – the huge indie wrestling show coming to the Chicago area," 12 May 2018 Now, a lot of people in Hollywood are going to fork out millions in the midterms, obviously, with the hope to win both houses and impeach. Fox News, "Psychologist says Americans are suffering from 'Trump Anxiety Disorder'," 31 July 2018 And for those who don't want to fork out $99 per ticket, per day, not to mention a four-hour drive from Orange County — no worries. Joe Haakenson,, "Riding artificial waves in the middle of farm country," 4 May 2018 Calling off the SkyBridge deal means HNA won’t have to fork out cash for the stake at a time when the conglomerate’s finances have been tight. Rob Copeland, WSJ, "HNA Scuttles Deal for Scaramucci’s SkyBridge," 30 Apr. 2018

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


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


15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for fork


Middle English forke, from Old English & Anglo-French; Old English forca & Anglo-French furke, from Latin furca

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Learn More about fork

Dictionary Entries near fork

for it






fork beam

Statistics for fork

Last Updated

17 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fork

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

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More Definitions for fork



English Language Learners Definition of fork

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a small tool with two or more pointed parts (called prongs or tines) used for picking up and eating food
: a garden tool with two or more prongs used for lifting and digging soil
: a place where something (such as a road or river) divides into two parts



English Language Learners Definition of fork (Entry 2 of 2)

of a road, river, etc. : to divide into two parts
informal : to pay or give (money)
: to lift or throw (something) with a fork


\ ˈfȯrk How to pronounce fork (audio) \

Kids Definition of fork

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an implement having a handle and two or more prongs for taking up (as in eating), pitching, or digging
2 : a forked part or tool
3 : the place where something divides or branches a fork in the road
4 : one of the parts into which something divides or branches the left fork


forked; forking

Kids Definition of fork (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to divide into branches Drive to where the road forks.
2 : to pitch or lift with a fork


\ ˈfȯ(ə)rk How to pronounce fork (audio) \

Medical Definition of fork

1 : a forked part, tool, or piece of equipment — see tuning fork
2 : the lower part of the human body where the legs diverge from the trunk usually including the legs

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More from Merriam-Webster on fork

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fork

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fork

Spanish Central: Translation of fork

Nglish: Translation of fork for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fork for Arabic Speakers

Comments on fork

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