hun·ker | \ˈhəŋ-kər \
hunkered; hunkering\ˈhəŋ-k(ə-)riŋ \

Definition of hunker 

intransitive verb

1 : crouch, squat usually used with down

2 : to settle in or dig in for a sustained period used with down hunker down for a good long waitNew Yorker

Examples of hunker in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

On summery days, customers hunker down with coffee and friends, or with books, phones and laptops, or all of the above. Carol Deptolla, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Dining patios proliferate around Milwaukee; a look at some new ones for 2018," 10 July 2018 At the observatory, most of the employee-evacuees hunkered down in the visiting scientists’ quarters, meant for out-of-town astronomers, and the cafeteria. Sarah Scoles, WIRED, "Puerto Rico's Observatory Is Still Recovering From Hurricane Maria," 15 June 2018 Nathangel Lopez hunkered down with students and teachers in a gym locker room. Jeff Martin, Time, "Teacher Fired Gun in Classroom and Barricaded Himself at Georgia High School, Police Say," 28 Feb. 2018 Chip and Joanna Gaines have been hunkering down with their family since the arrival of their fifth child, Crew, in June. Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "10 of Chip and Joanna Gaines' Sweetest Family Traditions You’ll Want to Copy ASAP," 9 July 2018 Less than a mile away, as if in a rival armed camp, Kim hunkered down at his own fortified hotel, the St. Regis. Author: Mark Landler, Anchorage Daily News, "As Trump-Kim summit nears, president is confident, but wide gaps remain," 11 June 2018 The first quarter is traditionally the weakest of the year as consumers hunker down after the holidays, though seasonal adjustments in federal statistics should account for that in monthly reports. Sarah Chaney, WSJ, "Consumers Shy From Spending, Despite Tax Cuts," 16 Apr. 2018 Some of us have held out hope that the Moroun family might be taking a more civic-minded, less-obstructionist stance on matters of public concern — rejoining the community after decades of hunkering down to protect their own narrow interests. John Gallagher, Detroit Free Press, "A 'new' image for the Morouns? New bridge TV ad demolishes that fantasy," 21 June 2018 After hunkering down in a war room in London, Mr. Roberts surprised Disney and Fox in February with a $31 billion informal offer for Sky. Keach Hagey, WSJ, "Two Titans’ Rocky Relationship Stands Between Comcast and Fox," 21 June 2018

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

1720, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hunker

probably akin to Middle Dutch hucken, huken to squat, Middle Low German hōken to squat, peddle, Old Norse hūka to squat

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Dictionary Entries near hunker





hunker down



Phrases Related to hunker

hunker down

Statistics for hunker

Last Updated

19 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hunker

The first known use of hunker was in 1720

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More Definitions for hunker



English Language Learners Definition of hunker

: to lower your body to the ground by bending your legs


hun·ker | \ˈhəŋ-kər \
hunkered; hunkering

Kids Definition of hunker

: crouch entry 1 She hunkered in the tall grass.

hunker down

: to settle in for a long time He hunkered down for the winter.

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