knee

noun, often attributive
\ ˈnē How to pronounce knee (audio) \

Definition of knee

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a joint in the middle part of the human leg that is the articulation between the femur, tibia, and patella also : the part of the leg that includes this joint
b(1) : the joint in the hind leg of a four-footed vertebrate that corresponds to the human knee
(2) : the carpal joint of the foreleg of a four-footed vertebrate
c : the tarsal joint of a bird
d : the joint between the femur and tibia of an insect
2 : something resembling the human knee: such as
a : a piece of timber naturally or artificially bent for use in supporting structures coming together at an angle (such as the deck beams of a ship)
b : a rounded or conical process rising from the roots of various swamp-growing trees cypress knee
3 : the part of a garment covering the knee
4 : a blow with the bent knee
to one's knees
: into a state of submission or defeat

knee

verb
kneed; kneeing

Definition of knee (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to strike with the knee
2 archaic : to bend the knee to

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Other Words from knee

Noun

kneed \ ˈnēd How to pronounce kneed (audio) \ adjective

Examples of knee in a Sentence

Noun I fell down and hurt my knee. She suffered a serious knee injury. His knees trembled with fear. He got down on one knee and proposed to her. His little granddaughter sat on his knee. Her jeans had holes at the knees. Verb His attacker kneed him in the stomach.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun That knee to the neck could just as easily been inflicted upon my own son. Washington Post, "A plea for peace: We are moving toward the point of no return," 1 June 2020 Protests sparked by the death of Mr. Floyd, a 46-year-old black man who died after a white police officer held him down with a knee on his neck, unfolded across a nation already deep in crisis amid the coronavirus pandemic. Jennifer Calfas, WSJ, "A City-by-City Look at Where Things Stand Amid Days of Unrest," 1 June 2020 Demonstrations have spread across the nation in response to the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died after a white police officer pinned him to the ground with a knee to the back of his neck in Minneapolis on May 25. Rachel Yang, EW.com, "Insecure star Natasha Rothwell says new episode is 'a break from this nightmare' amid upheaval," 1 June 2020 The vandalism followed a second day of protests over the killing in Minneapolis of George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody after a white officer pinned him to the ground with a knee to his neck. Michael Granberry, Dallas News, "Crow and Perot museums sustain damage after weekend protests in downtown Dallas," 31 May 2020 Even as paramedics arrive to check Floyd’s pulse, Chauvin’s knee remains positioned on the man’s neck in the video. Ruben Vives, Los Angeles Times, "He begged looters not to attack his struggling restaurant: ‘I’m just ... trying to survive’," 30 May 2020 Those are the same words that Floyd said before dying with Chauvin’s knee on his neck. Ann Killion, SFChronicle.com, "Colin Kaepernick and George Floyd: Two knees, two reactions, one issue," 30 May 2020 At 75, Margaret Evans has survived breast cancer, heart problems, and three knee replacements. Maria Aspan, Fortune, "Medical devices are nearly impossible for patients to track. Can these companies finally fix that?," 29 May 2020 But the universities have in general bent the knee to the devaluation of humane studies, perhaps because the rationale for that devaluation has come from their own economics departments and business schools. Marilynne Robinson, The New York Review of Books, "What Kind of Country Do We Want?," 27 May 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Though many of the key characters in Aldridge Garden’s story are no longer knee deep in soil, their legacies still bloom year after year, producing a kaleidoscope of colors that locals have grown to love and adore. Sarah Cook Mcbride, al, "Aldridge Gardens builds on a legacy of family gardening," 8 Apr. 2020 From turf burns to knee injuries and just about everything in between, there hasn’t been a Pasadena ISD athletic squad that hasn’t needed an athletic trainer at some point in a season if not every game. Robert Avery, Houston Chronicle, "City honors Pasadena ISD athletic trainers with proclamation," 4 Mar. 2020 Walker missed nearly all of the past two years with elbow and shoulder issues and Souza played less than a quarter of the team’s games since the start of 2018 due to shoulder and knee injuries. Nick Piecoro, azcentral, "Diamondbacks nontender Taijuan Walker and Steven Souza Jr., opt to keep Jake Lamb," 2 Dec. 2019 There has been much speculation in the news media that Williamson’s weight might have left him prone to knee injuries. New York Times, "Zion Williamson Is Back. Will His Knee Hold Up?," 24 Jan. 2020 The Lions lost starting running back Kerryon Johnson to knee surgery and their running game has been, well, typical by Detroit standards. Brad Biggs, chicagotribune.com, "Brad Biggs’ 10 thoughts on the Bears’ 20-13 win over the Lions," 11 Nov. 2019 Mike Oestmann was charged with third-degree assault for kneeing a suspect in the chest and punching him in the face while sitting in a chair and handcuffed. Sam Tabachnik, The Denver Post, "A Denver police sergeant was charged with assault after he broke a teenager’s leg and nose. Was it excessive force?," 25 Sep. 2019 The Lions rank 22nd in the NFL in rushing at 96.9 yards per game and lost starter Kerryon Johnson to knee surgery last week. Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press, "Darius Slay stays, Detroit Lions stand pat at NFL's trade deadline," 29 Oct. 2019 The video shows the officer kneeing Pesoa's head into the sidewalk outside a McDonald's restaurant in a shopping center as Pesoa lies prone on his stomach. Michael Kunzelman, baltimoresun.com, "Maryland officer charged with assault in videotaped arrest," 9 July 2019

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for knee

Noun

Middle English, from Old English cnēow; akin to Old High German kneo knee, Latin genu, Greek gony

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Time Traveler for knee

Time Traveler

The first known use of knee was before the 12th century

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Statistics for knee

Last Updated

4 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Knee.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/knee. Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for knee

knee

noun
How to pronounce knee (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of knee

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the joint that bends at the middle of your leg
: the upper part of your leg when you are sitting
: the part that covers the knee on a pair of pants

knee

verb

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

: to hit (a person) with your knee

knee

noun
\ ˈnē How to pronounce knee (audio) \

Kids Definition of knee

1 : the joint or region in which the thigh and lower leg come together
2 : the part of a garment covering the knee
3 : lap entry 1 She sat on my knee.

knee

noun
\ ˈnē How to pronounce knee (audio) \

Medical Definition of knee

1a : a joint in the middle part of the human leg that is the articulation between the femur, tibia, and patella

called also knee joint

b : the part of the leg that includes this joint
2a : the joint in the hind leg of a 4-footed vertebrate that corresponds to the human knee
b : the carpal joint of the foreleg of a 4-footed vertebrate

Other Words from knee

kneed \ ˈnēd How to pronounce kneed (audio) \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on knee

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for knee

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with knee

Spanish Central: Translation of knee

Nglish: Translation of knee for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of knee for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about knee

Comments on knee

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