hatch·​et ˈha-chət How to pronounce hatchet (audio)
: a short-handled ax often with a hammerhead to be used with one hand

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Ten years ago, on what was his first day doing television news, Jessob Reisbeck's life and career were turned upside down by a hatchet-wielding hitchhiker named Kai. Chris Foran, Journal Sentinel, 13 Jan. 2023 When an onlooker rushes over to help, the man emerges from the vehicle, traps her in a bear hug and begins choking her — only to have his efforts thwarted by the hitchhiker, who removes a hatchet from his backpack and bashes his head in. Marlow Stern, Rolling Stone, 8 Jan. 2023 The police report from the 2016 incident contains a photo of a hatchet. Los Angeles Times, 8 Jan. 2023 The statement of probable cause noted that video surveillance from a local Walmart confirmed that Ravi Pansuriya purchased an Ozark Trail brand hatchet on the morning of Oct. 3. Thomas Goodwin Smith, Baltimore Sun, 4 Jan. 2023 Angus Brown allegedly killed 62-year-old David Brown with a hatchet in an attack before dawn Monday at the family’s home in Hamilton, Va., according to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office. Jessica Contrera, Washington Post, 2 Jan. 2023 Logs split by a hatchet fuelled a wood-burning stove. Luke Mogelson, The New Yorker, 26 Dec. 2022 In last year’s world championship, Stephen Prachaseri from Deerfield Beach qualified and competed in the hatchet event. Emmett Hall, Sun Sentinel, 16 Dec. 2022 And if that calls for a kill-the-monster-with-a-hatchet, 360-windmill dunk with two seconds left in a 10-point game, all right, all right, all right. Gordon Monson, The Salt Lake Tribune, 11 Dec. 2022 See More

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.

Word History


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

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near hatchet

Cite this Entry

“Hatchet.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hatchet. Accessed 26 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition


hatch·​et ˈhach-ət How to pronounce hatchet (audio)
: a small ax with a short handle

Medical Definition


hatch·​et ˈhach-ət How to pronounce hatchet (audio)
: a dental excavator

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