knackered

adjective
knack·​ered | \ ˈna-kərd How to pronounce knackered (audio) \

Definition of knackered

British

Don't Get Tired Defining Knackered

Knackered is derived from the past participle of knacker, a slang term meaning "to kill," as well as "to tire, exhaust, or wear out." The origins of the verb knacker are uncertain, but the word is perhaps related to an older noun knacker, which originally referred to a harness-maker or saddlemaker, and later referred to a buyer of animals no longer able to do farm work (or their carcasses) as well as to a buyer of old structures. The origins of the noun knacker, however, remain obscure. Knackered is used on both sides of the Atlantic but is more common among British speakers.

Examples of knackered in a Sentence

She was too knackered to join them for dinner. I'm absolutely knackered, so no pub-crawling for me tonight.
Recent Examples on the Web The adrenaline from having our first child (and keeping him alive) got me through the first several days without feeling completely knackered, but my lack of nocturnal restoration eventually took its toll. Patrick Wilson, Outside Online, 15 June 2020 And, if their knees get too knackered, there’s a backup Santa. Washington Post, 22 Nov. 2021 Mounting a knackered horse and dragging a fat old farmer, Sancho, in his wake, the don declares undying love for an ordinary girl out of her depth. Jeanette Winterson, New York Times, 3 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'knackered.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of knackered

1971, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for knackered

English slang knacker to kill, tire, perhaps from knacker, noun

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The first known use of knackered was in 1971

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Dictionary Entries Near knackered

knacker

knackered

knackery

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Cite this Entry

“Knackered.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/knackered. Accessed 10 Aug. 2022.

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