hatchet job

noun

Definition of hatchet job

: a forceful or malicious verbal attack

Examples of hatchet job in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Entire books have been written about Shakespeare’s reliance on partisan chroniclers; his hatchet job on the last Yorkist king, Richard III; his flirtation with danger in depicting the removal of a monarch when his own Queen was old and heirless. Helen Lewis, The Atlantic, "The Crown’s Majestic Untruths," 5 Dec. 2020 These biographers want to like Monroe, and perhaps the more savvy among them know that many of their readers won’t particularly like a hatchet job done on him. Steve Donoghue, The Christian Science Monitor, "‘James Monroe’ is an unclouded look at a complicated legacy," 10 Nov. 2020 But the fact is this is clearly, with the way it's been handled from the start with Senator Feinstein, meant to simply be a political hatchet job. Fox News, "Tucker: Brett Kavanaugh and the hypocrisy of the Democratic Party," 18 Sep. 2018 Her vivid biography is neither a hagiography nor a hatchet job, but a frank and nuanced assessment of a complicated woman. Wendy Smith, BostonGlobe.com, "The formidable Kennedy sister," 20 Apr. 2018 In truth, a hatchet job probably wouldn’t bother Greenwald. Simon Van Zuylen-wood, Daily Intelligencer, "Does This Man Know More Than Robert Mueller?," 21 Jan. 2018 The best hatchet jobs don’t just assail an author or thinker for shoddy or disingenuous work. Laura Miller, Slate Magazine, "Cutting ’Em Down to Size," 5 Sep. 2017 Nevertheless, a hatchet job is always at risk of being read as evidence of a vendetta, motivated by a suspiciously personal dislike or rivalry. Laura Miller, Slate Magazine, "Cutting ’Em Down to Size," 5 Sep. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of hatchet job

1940, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hatchet job

Time Traveler for hatchet job

Time Traveler

The first known use of hatchet job was in 1940

See more words from the same year

Statistics for hatchet job

Last Updated

16 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Hatchet job.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hatchet%20job. Accessed 16 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hatchet job

hatchet job

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hatchet job

informal : a very harsh and unfair spoken or written attack

More from Merriam-Webster on hatchet job

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hatchet job

Comments on hatchet job

What made you want to look up hatchet job? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Words of Snow and Ice Quiz

  • image1037863653
  • Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!