jaw

1 of 2

noun

1
a
: either of two complex cartilaginous or bony structures in most vertebrates that border the mouth, support the soft parts enclosing it, usually bear teeth on their oral margin, and are an upper that is more or less firmly fused with the skull and a lower that is hinged, movable, and articulated with the temporal bone of either side compare mandible, maxilla
b
: the parts constituting the walls of the mouth and serving to open and close it
usually used in plural
c
: any of various organs of invertebrates that perform the function of the vertebrate jaws
2
: something resembling the jaw of an animal: such as
a
: either of two or more opposable parts that open and close for holding or crushing something between them
b
: one of the sides of a narrow pass or channel
3
a
: a space lying between or as if between open jaws
escaped from out of the jaws of the whale
b
: a position or situation in which one is threatened
rode into the jaws of danger
4
: a friendly chat
jawless adjective
jawless vertebrates

jaw

2 of 2

verb

jawed; jawing; jaws

intransitive verb

: to talk especially abusively, indignantly, or long-windedly
jawing with the referee

transitive verb

: to talk to in a scolding or boring manner

Examples of jaw in a Sentence

Noun He broke his upper jaw. the jaws of a tiger the jaws of a vise Verb The coach was jawing with the referee. She was on the phone jawing with her sister all night.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The Echidna and the Platypus Both are mammals with similar anatomies, although modern echidnas have narrower jaws and snouts. Paul Smaglik, Discover Magazine, 29 May 2024 Elliot’s jaw immediately dropped as Sofia let out a joyful scream and fell to the ground. Sara Vallone, Miami Herald, 24 May 2024
Verb
May 23, 2024 Bart earned himself a surprising exit, when he got tossed for jawing at the first-base umpire following a groundout to end the eighth inning, after the Giants had surged ahead 7-6. Cam Inman, The Mercury News, 23 May 2024 If Clark exceeded her own standards — with 41 points, 12 assists and 7 rebounds — so, too, did the game, which was free of jawing, dismissive gestures and score settling. Billy Witz, New York Times, 2 Apr. 2024 See all Example Sentences for jaw 

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

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1748, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

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

Dictionary Entries Near jaw

Cite this Entry

“Jaw.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/jaw. Accessed 25 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

jaw

1 of 2 noun
1
a
: either of two structures of bone or cartilage of vertebrate animals that support the soft parts enclosing the mouth and usually bear teeth
b
: the parts making up the walls of the mouth and serving to open and close it
usually used in plural
c
: any of various organs of invertebrate animals that serve the same purpose as the jaws of vertebrate animals
2
: something resembling the jaw of an animal in form or action
especially : one of a set of opposing parts that open and close for holding or crushing something between them
jawed
ˈjȯd
adjective

jaw

2 of 2 verb
1
: to talk for a long time
2

Medical Definition

jaw

noun
1
: either of two complex cartilaginous or bony structures in most vertebrates that border the mouth, support the soft parts enclosing it, and usually bear teeth on their oral margin:
a
: an upper structure more or less firmly fused with the skull

called also upper jaw, maxilla

b
: a lower structure that consists of a single bone or of completely fused bones and that is hinged, movable, and articulated by a pair of condyles with the temporal bone of either side

called also inferior maxillary bone, lower jaw, mandible

2
: the parts constituting the walls of the mouth and serving to open and close it
usually used in plural
3
: any of various organs of invertebrates that perform the function of the vertebrate jaws

More from Merriam-Webster on jaw

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