\ ˈgȯk How to pronounce gawk (audio) \

Definition of gawk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a clumsy stupid person : lout


gawked; gawking; gawks

Definition of gawk (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to gape or stare stupidly gawked at the fish in the aquarium

Other Words from gawk


gawker noun

Synonyms for gawk

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of gawk in a Sentence

Noun thought that the linebackers were dumb gawks until he got to know them better Verb a crowd of gawking tourists couldn't help gawking at the exotically dressed guests in the hotel lobby
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The badaud, by contrast, is always liable to form a group or crowd, either for a mass gawk or some communal response. Julian Barnes, The New York Review of Books, 27 Apr. 2022 People in the tavern gawk as Jamie interrogates his aunt, accusing her of purchasing a shop for Fergus to print propaganda. Lincee Ray,, 4 Apr. 2022 With its cool look and flashy two-tone color schemes, folks will take gawk at the RAV4 Prime at the stoplight. Tribune News Service, cleveland, 30 Oct. 2021 People take deep breaths to inhale fresh air, gawk at the wildlife and rock climb. NBC News, 24 Mar. 2021 This is pretty typical of my Chicago unrealistic gawk-searching. Rebecca Makkai, Curbed, 25 Feb. 2021 The reader doesn’t gawk at her tragedy and resilience. Karen Valby, New York Times, 4 Feb. 2020 Even in the drowsy predawn morning, onlookers stopped to gawk. Helen Rosner, The New Yorker, 28 Oct. 2019 By Saturday afternoon, reporters and photographers loitered outside the restaurant, as did people who had wandered over to gawk. Sarah Murray,, 24 June 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb This urge to gawk at the unspoken parts of war reminded me of my second deployment as a Marine in southern Afghanistan in 2010, where there was plenty of killing and dying but not on a scale comparable to Ukraine. New York Times, 13 June 2022 The chance to gawk at the splayed viscera of other people’s lives would surely attract viewers no matter who occupied the therapist’s chair. Alexandra Schwartz, The New Yorker, 16 May 2022 Bruce Paddock, who bought his first Riva Aquarama in 2009, recalls going to a waterside restaurant near his home on Lake Minnetonka, Minn., and watching the diners flock outside to gawk. Michael Verdon, Robb Report, 12 Feb. 2022 Students and Rollins staff members came in droves to the campus greenroom starting Monday to gawk, giggle and hold their noses up at the putrid-smelling flower. Joe Mario Pedersen, Orlando Sentinel, 27 Apr. 2022 No one wants to end up with a drink that tastes like exhaust from the tour buses dropping people off to gawk at the cherry trees. Washington Post, 24 Mar. 2022 Bazzana is another player causing teammates to stop and gawk. Joe Freeman, oregonlive, 27 Jan. 2022 Chants and speeches were intermittently drowned out by the jackhammers at a nearby construction site, while tourists stopped to gawk and snap photos, and a steady stream of car horns droned their support down Seventh Avenue. Helen Rosner, The New Yorker, 8 Mar. 2022 When Payton turns up to watch a game from the bleachers, a mortified Connor looks away while the rest of the town turns to gawk at the tarnished celebrity in their midst. Guy Lodge, Variety, 28 Jan. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gawk.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of gawk


1757, in the meaning defined above


1785, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for gawk


probably from English dialect gawk left-handed


perhaps alteration of obsolete gaw to stare

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Last Updated

6 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Gawk.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for gawk


\ ˈgȯk How to pronounce gawk (audio) \
gawked; gawking

Kids Definition of gawk

: to stare stupidly She stood there gawking at the celebrities.

More from Merriam-Webster on gawk

Nglish: Translation of gawk for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gawk for Arabic Speakers


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