kern

noun (1)
\ ˈkərn , ˈkern \
variants: or kerne

Definition of kern 

(Entry 1 of 4)

1 : a light-armed foot soldier of medieval Ireland or Scotland

2 : yokel

kern

noun (2)
\ ˈkərn \

Definition of kern (Entry 2 of 4)

: a part of a typeset letter that projects beyond its side bearings

Kern

biographical name
\ ˈkərn \

Definition of Kern (Entry 3 of 4)

Jerome David 1885–1945 American composer

Kern

geographical name
\ ˈkərn \

Definition of Kern (Entry 4 of 4)

river 150 miles (241 kilometers) long in south central California flowing southwest into a reservoir

First Known Use of kern

Noun (1)

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1683, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for kern

Noun (1)

Middle English kerne, from Middle Irish cethern band of soldiers

Noun (2)

French carne corner, from French dialect, from Latin cardin-, cardo hinge

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about kern

Dictionary Entries near kern

kermesite

kermes oak

kermis

kern

Kern

kernel

kerneled

Statistics for kern

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for kern

The first known use of kern was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

More from Merriam-Webster on kern

See words that rhyme with kern

Comments on kern

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

WORD OF THE DAY

by word of mouth

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Food Quiz

How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!