: a special ready capacity that is hard to analyze or teach
: a clever trick or stratagem
: a clever way of doing something
archaic : an ingenious device
broadly : toy, knickknack
Choose the Right Synonym for knack

gift, faculty, aptitude, bent, talent, genius, knack mean a special ability for doing something.

gift often implies special favor by God or nature.

the gift of singing beautifully

faculty applies to an innate or less often acquired ability for a particular accomplishment or function.

a faculty for remembering names

aptitude implies a natural liking for some activity and the likelihood of success in it.

a mechanical aptitude

bent is nearly equal to aptitude but it stresses inclination perhaps more than specific ability.

a family with an artistic bent

talent suggests a marked natural ability that needs to be developed.

has enough talent to succeed

genius suggests impressive inborn creative ability.

has no great genius for poetry

knack implies a comparatively minor but special ability making for ease and dexterity in performance.

the knack of getting along

Examples of knack in a Sentence

She has a knack for telling interesting stories. The jazz musician has an incredible knack for improvisation.
Recent Examples on the Web In fact, Thomson seems to have had a knack for designing stunningly gorgeous devices. IEEE Spectrum, 2 June 2024 The Florida Panthers have had a knack for shutting opponents down late in games during the playoffs. Jordan McPherson, Miami Herald, 1 June 2024 These filmmakers clearly have a knack for capturing nautical adventure and the delusional yet undeniably human desire to conquer the seas. Katie Walsh, Los Angeles Times, 31 May 2024 Castle averaged three assists per game, displaying a knack for getting the ball to others. Roderick Boone, Charlotte Observer, 29 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for knack 

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

Word History


Middle English knak

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

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

Dictionary Entries Near knack

Cite this Entry

“Knack.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


: a clever or skillful way of doing something : trick
: a natural ability : talent
has a knack for making friends

More from Merriam-Webster on knack

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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