jack·​ham·​mer ˈjak-ˌha-mər How to pronounce jackhammer (audio)
: a pneumatically operated percussive rock-drilling tool usually held in the hands
: a device in which a tool (such as a chisel for breaking up pavements) is driven percussively by compressed air
jackhammer verb

Examples of jackhammer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Agents reportedly were using a cadaver dog to search the subdivision and a Courier Journal photographer saw investigators using a jackhammer on the driveway of a home. Rachel Smith, The Courier-Journal, 8 Sep. 2023 The bathroom, where past owners had poured concrete with a metal mesh, required a jackhammer to remove and replace. Chris Moody, Washington Post, 22 Aug. 2023 Crews were using jackhammers and other heavy equipment to break up the rocks, while geotechnical personnel were on site to scale and survey the slide area to make sure the road was safe. Alex Riggins, San Diego Union-Tribune, 21 Aug. 2023 In an exclusive clip from the episode above, Henson decided to get her hands dirty and help Jonathan, 45, and Drew by picking up a jackhammer. Daniel S. Levine, Peoplemag, 23 June 2023 Crews used sledgehammers and jackhammers to chip away at the wall before it was lifted off the victim, who was later pronounced dead at the scene, the captain added. Abigail Adams, Peoplemag, 9 June 2023 His assignment, one of the most ridiculously contrived in the history of hitman flicks, involves using a rifle the size of a jackhammer to shoot up through the ceiling at a man two floors above him — a target who just seconds ago was walking around in the open. John Defore, The Hollywood Reporter, 14 July 2022 Then, a few days later, there was Lemon on the same network opining on Haley, hitting rock bottom, then pulling out the jackhammer. Monica Hesse, Washington Post, 22 Feb. 2023 Yen, already a global martial arts star, studied Wing Chun under fellow Hong Kong action star Sammo Hung, and makes the unassuming Ip Man a riveting blur of jackhammer punches and balletic movement whenever anyone proves unwise enough to disturb his quiet life. Dennis Perkins, EW.com, 5 Aug. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'jackhammer.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1912, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of jackhammer was in 1912

Dictionary Entries Near jackhammer

Cite this Entry

“Jackhammer.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/jackhammer. Accessed 26 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


jack·​ham·​mer ˈjak-ˌham-ər How to pronounce jackhammer (audio)
: a tool driven by compressed air that is used for drilling or breaking up hard substances (as rock or pavement) by a repeated pounding action

More from Merriam-Webster on jackhammer

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