jack·ham·mer | \ˈjak-ˌha-mər \

Definition of jackhammer 

1 : a pneumatically operated percussive rock-drilling tool usually held in the hands

2 : a device in which a tool (such as a chisel for breaking up pavements) is driven percussively by compressed air

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Other Words from jackhammer

jackhammer verb

Examples of jackhammer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Next time you phone city hall to complain about the condition of your street, officials will ship you a crate containing a small jackhammer, a shovel and a five-gallon bucket of Pot Hole Patch. Drew Broach, NOLA.com, "How much money do Jefferson Parish officials have in their campaign accounts?," 16 Feb. 2018 The couple hired contractors to break up the concrete floor with jackhammers and install French drains beneath a new floor with a radiant heating system, which banished the indoor stream. Tim Mckeough, New York Times, "In the Hudson Valley, a Home With Centuries’ Worth of Stories," 3 July 2018 Sixty volunteers showed up with tools and jackhammers. Dawn Fallik, Washington Post, "What to do about lonely older men? Put them to work.," 24 June 2018 That means that instead of chisel work in the field, the paleontologists are wielding jackhammers and rock saws. Steve Johnson, chicagotribune.com, "'Antarctic Dinosaurs' bring new ice age to Field Museum," 13 June 2018 Bouwes combed the internet and found a thriftier alternative: a hydraulic post pounder, a machine that resembles a cross between a jackhammer and a bazooka. Ben Goldfarb, Science | AAAS, "Beaver dams without beavers? Artificial logjams are a popular but controversial restoration tool," 7 June 2018 The aural assault of jackhammers and cement trucks fades at the walls of the complex. Fortune, "Deadly Chinese Fentanyl Is Creating a New Era of Drug Kingpins," 6 June 2018 Cisneros backed up their truck — a Bergkamp FP5 Flameless Pothole Patcher, to be exact — while Sanchez squared off the hole, using a jackhammer to enlarge its dimensions to about 2 feet by 5. Bruce Selcraig, San Antonio Express-News, "On the prowl with S.A.’s pothole patrol," 23 May 2018 Over the next several days, their progress is marked by the phantasmic puffs of white powder that rise from the valley’s black spruce, dust kicked up as the RAB jackhammers into the ground and busts up everything in its path. Genesee Keevil, Popular Mechanics, "The Rush: What the World's Greatest Gold Prospector Knows," 17 May 2018

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

1912, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

3 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for jackhammer

The first known use of jackhammer was in 1912

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English Language Learners Definition of jackhammer

: a heavy tool used to break hard substances (such as concrete) into pieces by a repeated pounding action

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Comments on jackhammer

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


evasion of direct action or statement

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