jaw

noun
\ ˈjȯ How to pronounce jaw (audio) \

Definition of jaw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : 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
3a : 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

jaw

verb
jawed; jawing; jaws

Definition of jaw (Entry 2 of 2)

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

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Other Words from jaw

Noun

jawless \ ˈjȯ-​ləs How to pronounce jawless (audio) \ adjective
jawless vertebrates

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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun By Sheera Frenkel, Ben Decker and Davey Alba There have been plenty of jaw-dropping digital moments during the coronavirus pandemic. New York Times, "How the ‘Plandemic’ Movie and Its Falsehoods Spread Widely Online," 20 May 2020 But those expectations got a significant boost this week with Epic Games' unveiling of a jaw-dropping real-time demo of its Unreal Engine 5 technology. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "How Epic got such amazing Unreal Engine 5 results on next-gen consoles," 14 May 2020 That set off a chain of events that led to a jaw-dropping insert-record-scratch-sound-effect-here moment from the Marine when Ben told Lacina to write his name down at Tribal Council. Dalton Ross, EW.com, "Survivor: Winners at War finale recap: Dominance is rewarded," 14 May 2020 Expect jaw-dropping twists in 'Au Pair Nightmare' Luckily for Taylor, Emily sneaks down the stairs of the fabulous modern mansion and takes an instant shine to Taylor. Bill Goodykoontz, azcentral, "Red flags and melodrama: 'Au Pair Nightmare' is the Lifetime-iest kind of Lifetime movie," 14 May 2020 But both dismissed the critiques in emphatic and jaw-dropping fashion, lifting the Blazers to their first-ever playoff victory in Houston. Joe Freeman, oregonlive, "Trail Blazers Classics: LaMarcus Aldridge’s record-setting night lifts Portland over Houston Rockets in Game 1 of playoffs," 12 May 2020 The throw may not get the acclaim that Bo Jackson’s or Jose Guillen’s, but it’s up there in that jaw-dropping company. Sportsday Staff, Dallas News, "SportsDay staffers pick the best plays they’ve ever witnessed: Game-winners, miraculous catches and rare anomalies," 4 May 2020 Josh Christopher and Ciri Sawyer throw down jaw-dropping dunks in Rancho Mirage Holiday Invitational dunk contest. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Five-star mega-guard Josh Christopher says no to Michigan basketball," 14 Apr. 2020 What happened next was a jaw-dropping shock for several of the players, including a quintet of Greater Cincinnati recruits. Scott Springer, Cincinnati.com, "Local players on UC's soccer team react to AD John Cunningham's program closure," 14 Apr. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Bertin and Forbes ditch most of the gumshoes, sending just a pair of them (Pauline, jut-jawed Brennan) on a fresh and equally loopy adventure. New York Times, "In These Elegant Comics, Love and Darkness Collide," 14 Feb. 2020 Yasiel Puig, who had just been traded to the Indians, continued to jaw at Pirates players as he was being pulled away from the dugout. Alaa Abdeldaiem, SI.com, "Amir Garrett Charges Pirates Dugout in Wild Brawl; Yasial Puig Among Five Ejected," 30 July 2019 With the Clippers leading by 17 points - their largest lead at 65-48 in the second quarter - Ben McLemore shoved Patrick Beverley from behind and Beverley shoved him back before Russell Westbrook pulled them apart after both had been jawing plenty. Jill Painter Lopez, Houston Chronicle, "Russell Westbrook, Rockets get past Clippers," 20 Dec. 2019 In addition to Green’s ejection, center Marquese Chriss was assessed a technical foul midway through the third quarter for jawing with referee Ken Mauer. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Warriors lose cool in blowout loss to Lakers," 27 Feb. 2020 Center Marquese Chriss was ejected in the waning seconds after jawing at midcourt with Utah center Tony Bradley, a fitting end to an ugly night. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Warriors get blown out by Jazz for 12th loss in 13 games," 22 Jan. 2020 Wide receiver Allen Robinson jawed with critics on Twitter on Sunday night and Monday morning, though his tone seemed to be increasingly more light-hearted as the hours wore on. Colleen Kane, chicagotribune.com, "Matt Nagy must make sure the Bears don’t unravel amid mounting frustration: 'Stay off the Twitter’," 22 Oct. 2019 Montgomery complained about the strike zone to Gonzalez, who warned the left-hander before quickly giving him the heave-ho when Montgomery kept jawing at him. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Cruz hits 2 of 4 homers by Twins in 8-5 win over Royals," 19 Sep. 2019 Texas Tech was able to keep its composure and avoided jawing back at the Mountaineers, much to their benefit. Brice Paterik, Dallas News, "Texas Tech upsets No. 12 West Virginia with elite shooting and composure under pressure," 29 Jan. 2020

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

Noun

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

Verb

1748, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for jaw

Noun

Middle English

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Time Traveler for jaw

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for jaw

Last Updated

24 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Jaw.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/jaw. Accessed 31 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for jaw

jaw

noun
How to pronounce jaw (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of jaw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: either one of the two bones of the face where teeth grow
: the lower part of a person's face
: two parts of a machine or tool that open and close to hold or crush something

jaw

verb

English Language Learners Definition of jaw (Entry 2 of 2)

informal : to talk in an angry way or for a very long time

jaw

noun
\ ˈjȯ How to pronounce jaw (audio) \

Kids Definition of jaw

1 : either of an upper or lower bony structure that supports the soft parts of the mouth and usually bears teeth on its edge and of which the lower part is movable
2 : a part of an invertebrate animal (as an insect) that resembles or does the work of a human jaw
3 : one of a pair of moving parts that open and close for holding or crushing something Tighten the jaws of the vise.

jaw

noun
\ ˈjȯ How to pronounce jaw (audio) \

Medical Definition of jaw

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

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More from Merriam-Webster on jaw

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for jaw

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with jaw

Spanish Central: Translation of jaw

Nglish: Translation of jaw for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of jaw for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about jaw

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