knock

verb
\ ˈnäk How to pronounce knock (audio) \
knocked; knocking; knocks

Definition of knock

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to strike something with a sharp blow
2 : to collide with something
3a : bustle heard them knocking around in the kitchen
b : wander knocked about Europe all summer
4a : to make a pounding noise
b : to have engine knock
5 : to find fault

transitive verb

1a(1) : to strike sharply
(2) : to drive, force, or make by or as if by so striking was knocked out of the campaign
b : to set forcibly in motion with a blow
2 : to cause to collide
3 : to find fault with always knocking those in authority
knock cold knock dead
: to move strongly especially to admiration or applause a comedian who really knocks them dead
knock for a loop
1a : overcome knocked my opponent for a loop
b : demolish knocked our idea for a loop
2 : dumbfound, amaze the news knocked them for a loop
knock one's socks off
: to overwhelm or amaze one a performance that will knock your socks off
knock on wood
used interjectionally to ward off misfortune
knock together
: to make or assemble especially hurriedly or in a makeshift way knocked together my own bookcase

knock

noun

Definition of knock (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a sharp blow : rap, hit a loud knock on the door
b(1) : a severe misfortune or hardship
(2) : setback, reversal
2a : a pounding noise
b : a sharp repetitive metallic noise caused by abnormal ignition in an automobile engine
3 : a harsh and often petty criticism the knock on him was that he couldn't handle the pressure

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of knock in a Sentence

Verb

The ball knocked him on the chin. She knocked the glass from his hand. He knocked the baseball over the fence. The ball hit him in the mouth and knocked out one of his teeth. The wind knocked him backwards. The dog knocked against the lamp. My knee accidentally knocked against the table. Skaters were knocking into each other all over the ice. I accidentally knocked my knee against the table.

Noun

He gave him a knock on the head. There was a loud knock at the door. She took some knocks early in her career. He likes praise but can't stand the knocks.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But the lack of a flip-around screen is a definite knock against the X-T3. Chris Welch, The Verge, "Fujifilm X-T3 review: the do-everything camera," 24 Oct. 2018 The existence and risks of marijuana addiction aren’t necessarily a knock on legalization. German Lopez, Vox, "Why you shouldn’t dismiss the risk of marijuana addiction," 20 Aug. 2018 Lack of depth may be the only knock on an explosive squad that just missed 2017 quarterfinals. Sandy Ringer, The Seattle Times, "Graham-Kapowsin (4A), Eastside Catholic (3A), Hockinson (2A) top Seattle Times preseason state football rankings," 13 Aug. 2018 An economic slowdown in China — coupled with the knock-on effects of widening trade disputes and slowing growth in Europe — may augur poorly for a global economy that even recently seemed in rude health. Keith Bradsher, New York Times, "As China Curbs Borrowing, Growth Shows Signs of Faltering," 14 June 2018 Kara, by contrast, presents a much more personal story with fewer knock-on effects for the larger narrative. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Detroit: Become Human review: Robotic in all of the wrong ways," 24 May 2018 The climactic scene started with a knock on the door of an expansive suite at the W Hotel in Manhattan’s Times Square. Jake Fischer And Jon Wertheim, SI.com, "Could a Rogue FBI Agent Derail the NCAA Corruption Probe?," 23 May 2018 And after the Gators cut the advantage in half in their half of the third, the Cougars immediately responded with another two-out base knock. Kyle Stackpole, Howard County Times, "Reservoir baseball falls, 4-1, to Chesapeake in 3A East region final," 22 May 2018 Vallejo helped her cause with an RBI single, then Parker followed the hit with a two-run knock of her own. Justin Maskulinski, Houston Chronicle, "Ashley Vallejo carries Willis past Jacksonville in area round," 4 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of knock

Verb

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

Noun

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

History and Etymology for knock

Verb

Middle English knoken, from Old English cnocian; akin to Middle High German knochen to press

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about knock

Statistics for knock

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for knock

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for knock

knock

verb

English Language Learners Definition of knock

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to hit something (such as a door) with the knuckles of your hand or with a hard object (such as a knocker) in order to get people's attention
: to hit (something or someone) in a forceful way
: to touch or hit someone or something in a way that is not planned or intended

knock

noun

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

: a hard, sharp hit
: the sound made by a hard hit
informal : an experience that makes you less confident or successful for a period of time : a difficult or painful experience

knock

verb
\ ˈnäk How to pronounce knock (audio) \
knocked; knocking

Kids Definition of knock

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to strike in order to get someone's attention I knocked before entering.
2 : to bump against something without intending to Careful! You knocked the lamp.
3 : to make a pounding noise The car's engine began knocking.
4 : to find fault with Don't knock it till you try it.
5 : to hit forcefully He knocked the ball out of the park.
knock down
1 : to strike to the ground with or as if with a sharp blow
2 : to take apart Knock down the tent before you leave camp.
knock off
: to stop doing something Hey, I don't like that, so knock it off!
knock over
: to cause to fall

knock

noun

Kids Definition of knock (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a pounding noise I heard a knock at the door.
2 : a sharp blow a knock on the head
3 : a difficult or painful experience You learn from life's knocks.

knock

noun
\ ˈnäk How to pronounce knock (audio) \

Medical Definition of knock

1 : a sharp blow a knock to the head
2 : a sharp pounding noise

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on knock

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for knock

Spanish Central: Translation of knock

Nglish: Translation of knock for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of knock for Arabic Speakers

Comments on knock

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to mark by some ceremony or observation

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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!