: 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
: the parts constituting the walls of the mouth and serving to open and close it —usually used in plural
: any of various organs of invertebrates that perform the function of the vertebrate jaws
: something resembling the jaw of an animal: such as
: either of two or more opposable parts that open and close for holding or crushing something between them
: one of the sides of a narrow pass or channel
: a space lying between or as if between open jaws
escaped from out of the jaws of the whale
: a position or situation in which one is threatened
rode into the jaws of danger
: a friendly chat
jawed; jawing; jaws
: to talk especially abusively, indignantly, or long-windedly
jawing with the referee
: to talk to in a scolding or boring manner
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
NounWhile hippos are often adored and considered a star attraction in some zoos, they have also been described as among the world’s deadliest mammals, capable of snapping a canoe in half with its jaws, according to the National Geographic. —Victoria Bisset, Washington Post, 17 May 2023 To support drooping jowls, Chiu works directly on them and also the scalp, jaw, and cheeks. —Fiorella Valdesolo, Town & Country, 28 Apr. 2023 Cottonmouths also have a dark mask that extends from the back of the jaw to the eye. —Cole Sikes Communications And Marketing Specialist Alabama Cooperative Extension System, al, 25 Apr. 2023 The fidelity presented here, even in Performance Mode at sub-4K resolution, is jaw dropping. —Christopher Cruz, Rolling Stone, 22 Apr. 2023 Stranger Things star Millie Bobby Brown dropped *all* of our jaws this weekend when her fiancè Jake Bongiovi posted an adorable mirror selfie of the two of them. —Briannah Rivera, Seventeen, 19 Apr. 2023 One end features a sharp, flat-head scraper on one side and tooth-like jaws on the other. —Sarah Halverson, Better Homes & Gardens, 19 Apr. 2023 The Rangers confirmed that Smith went to a hospital for testing on his face and jaw. Coulombe was pitching because Orioles starter Kyle Bradish left after being hit on his right foot by a line drive in the second inning. —Jim Reineking, USA TODAY, 4 Apr. 2023 Before this study, scientists thought the T. rex had a mouth similar to a crocodile’s, in which the teeth are visible even when the jaw is shut. —Alex Chun, Smithsonian Magazine, 31 Mar. 2023
VerbVisibly upset, Ayton was jawing in the direction of the team huddle, didn’t talk with the media after Game 3 but spoke on what happened following Game 4 as the Suns evened the series with two home wins. —Duane Rankin, The Arizona Republic, 14 May 2023 The first came on the famously quiet Kawhi Leonard, supposedly for jawing. —Ryan Finley, San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 Apr. 2023 Players pushed, jawed and expressed their frustration as both clubs entered the half scoreless. —oregonlive, 25 Mar. 2023 Green also got a technical foul early on, 55 seconds after coming into the game: a double technical was called on Green and Fox for jawing at each other. —Ann Killion, San Francisco Chronicle, 23 Apr. 2023 Westbrook and a Suns fan jawed back and forth at each other in the Club Gila River lounge area as Westbrook was headed back to the court before the second half of Sunday's Game 1. —Duane Rankin, The Arizona Republic, 18 Apr. 2023 Official Pat Adams called it, purportedly because the notoriously mute Leonard was jawing at UConn players. —Mark Zeigler, San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 Mar. 2023 There was plenty of jawing back and forth between the offense and defense after nearly every big play. —Creg Stephenson | Cstephenson@al.com, al, 8 Apr. 2023 There was a time late in the second period Sunday at Scotiabank Arena when four of their most recent top first-round picks were scrumming with the Toronto Maple Leafs, shoving and jawing with divisional rivals. —Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, 3 Apr. 2023 See More
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.
Love words? Need even more definitions?Merriam-Webster unabridged
See Definitions and Examples »
Get Word of the Day daily email!
Words at Play
Palter, Dissemble, and Other Words for Lying
Skunk, Bayou, and Other Words with Native American Origins
You've used more than you might think
Words For Things You Didn't Know Have Names, Vol. 2
When 'thingamajig' and 'thingamabob' just won't do
When Were Words First Used?
Look up any year to find out
Ask the Editors
Name That Thing MegaQuiz: Vol. 5
Test your visual vocabulary!
Take the quiz
Match the Baby Animal to Its Mama
Prove you're the best of the nest.
Take the quiz
Name That Thing
You know what it looks like… but what is it cal...
Take the quiz
Spelling Bee Quiz
Can you outdo past winners of the National Spelli...
Take the quiz