\ ˈgəŋk How to pronounce gunk (audio) \

Definition of gunk

: filthy, sticky, or greasy matter

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Other Words from gunk

gunky \ ˈgəŋ-​kē How to pronounce gunk (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for gunk


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Examples of gunk in a Sentence

The engine was all full of gunk. I need to wipe this gunk off my hands.
Recent Examples on the Web The feathers continually grow and fray into a powder, taking the gunk with them. René A. Guzman,, "The great blue heron towers above other water birds," 29 Dec. 2020 Your best bet is to first scrub away as much of the gunk as possible without the baking soda, using only a plastic spatula, kitchen brush or gentle scrubbing brush, and then rinse. Betsy Goldberg, Good Housekeeping, "5 Ways to Get Gunk off Your Dishes (Even When You Can’t See It)," 17 Dec. 2020 Because alcohol has a lower melting point than water, this can help thaw some of the frozen gunk. Emily Price, Popular Science, "The right and wrong ways to clear ice and snow from your car," 17 Dec. 2020 With a closer look (see here), the doctors reported seeing diffuse haziness in his left eye due to swelling, and—most obvious—a bee stinger still jutting out from his eyeball, surrounded by some eye gunk. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "Here’s what happens when a bee stings you directly in your eyeball," 4 Dec. 2020 This area can build up gunk over time that will attract dirt, which can clog your washer. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, "How to Clean Your Washing Machine," 18 Nov. 2020 Between 1911 and the 1960s, attempts to flush the contaminants out through a tunnel did not eliminate the gunk or the putrid stench that sometimes emanates from the waterway. Mihir Zaveri, New York Times, "Getting ‘Black Mayonnaise’ Out of One of America’s Dirtiest Waterways," 19 Nov. 2020 Here, on display, in courts and prisons, is the unpretty gunk of liberal democracy. Vinson Cunningham, The New Yorker, "Reënacting the Trial of a Black Woman Convicted of Voter Fraud," 2 Nov. 2020 According to Idriss, the gunk within the breakout itself can be reabsorbed into the body. Julie Ricevuto, Allure, "The Science of Beauty: A Complete Guide for Smaller-Looking Pores," 29 Oct. 2020

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

1943, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for gunk

from Gunk, trademark for a cleaning solvent

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Statistics for gunk

Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Gunk.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for gunk


How to pronounce gunk (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of gunk

chiefly US, informal : material that is dirty, sticky, or greasy


\ ˈgəŋk How to pronounce gunk (audio) \

Kids Definition of gunk

: a dirty, greasy, or sticky substance

Other Words from gunk

gunky \ ˈgəŋ-​kē \ adjective

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