hatch·​et | \ ˈha-chət How to pronounce hatchet (audio) \

Definition of hatchet

1 : a short-handled ax often with a hammerhead to be used with one hand
2 : tomahawk

Examples of hatchet in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The Headless Hatchet Lady of Red Rocks Morrison This legendary horror rides horseback, with her coat pulled over her head, brandishing a bloody hatchet. Tom Noel, The Know, "16 strange, spooky and (mostly) true Colorado stories to tell around a campfire," 24 Aug. 2019 Saia then pulled a hatchet out of his backpack and swung at the victim, striking him in the head. oregonlive.com, "Portland man sentenced for random hatchet attack," 14 Aug. 2019 Of course, the axes and hatchets were around because they were needed in an age when people cooked over wood stoves. Clayton E. Cramer, National Review, "Mass Murder without Guns," 7 Aug. 2019 With Obama’s blessing, Rhodes and his colleagues took pains to bury the rhetorical hatchet that Washington had wielded since the days of the Cold War. Jon Lee Anderson, The New Yorker, "Mexico, Cuba, and Trump’s Increasing Preference for Punishment Over Diplomacy," 11 June 2019 Common methods used throughout our history include axes, hatchets, blunt objects, knives, hanging, drowning, poison gas, poison, fire, and aircraft (and not just on 9/11). Clayton E. Cramer, National Review, "Mass Murder without Guns," 7 Aug. 2019 The task force also seized 35 knives, five batons, four hatchets, two body armor vests, brass knuckles, and $6,422 in cash at Leedham’s residence, officials said. Sofia Saric, BostonGlobe.com, "Rhode Island Hell’s Angel member sentenced to 7 years in prison for drug trafficking and firearms charge," 29 July 2019 The agency’s Instagram account showcases many of its more unusual finds: hatchets, brass knuckles, even live eels. Washington Post, "A man was caught traveling with a missile launcher in his luggage at BWI," 29 July 2019 The two hug it out and appear to bury the hatchet, both on screen and off. Janine Rubenstein, PEOPLE.com, "R & Beef? Drake and Chris Brown Recast Their Alleged 2012 Brawl as a Dance Battle in New Video," 26 July 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hatchet

Middle English hachet, from Anglo-French hachette, diminutive of hache battle-ax — more at hash

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Statistics for hatchet

Last Updated

8 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hatchet

The first known use of hatchet was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for hatchet



English Language Learners Definition of hatchet

: a small ax that has a short handle


hatch·​et | \ ˈha-chət How to pronounce hatchet (audio) \

Kids Definition of hatchet

: a small ax with a short handle


hatch·​et | \ ˈhach-ət How to pronounce hatchet (audio) \

Medical Definition of hatchet

: a dental excavator

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More from Merriam-Webster on hatchet

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hatchet

Spanish Central: Translation of hatchet

Nglish: Translation of hatchet for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hatchet for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hatchet

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readily or continually undergoing change

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