knuckle

noun
knuck·​le | \ ˈnə-kəl How to pronounce knuckle (audio) \

Definition of knuckle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the rounded prominence formed by the ends of the two adjacent bones at a joint used especially of those at the joints of the fingers
b : the joint of a knuckle
2 : a cut of meat consisting of the tarsal or carpal joint with the adjoining flesh
3 : something resembling a knuckle: such as
a(1) : one of the joining parts of a hinge through which a pin or rivet passes
b : the meeting of two surfaces at a sharp angle (as in a roof)
c : a pivotal point
4 knuckles plural : a set of metal finger rings or guards attached to a transverse piece and worn over the front of the doubled fist for use as a weapon

called also brass knuckles

knuckle

verb
knuckled; knuckling\ ˈnə-​k(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce knuckling (audio) \

Definition of knuckle (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to place the knuckles on the ground in shooting a marble

transitive verb

: to press or rub with the knuckles

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Other Words from knuckle

Noun

knuckled \ ˈnə-​kəld How to pronounce knuckled (audio) \ adjective

Examples of knuckle in a Sentence

Noun

She rapped her knuckles on the table.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Bridge with single-arm chest press Lie faceup with knees bent, feet hip-width apart, and left elbow bent and on the ground with a kettlebell in hand, knuckles faceup. Rozalynn S. Frazier, Health.com, "Hit All Your Major Muscles With This 6-Move Kettlebell Workout," 10 June 2019 What actually causes the sound of cracking knuckles? Julissa Treviño, Smithsonian, "What Causes the Cringe-Inducing Sound of Knuckle Cracking?," 13 Apr. 2018 In their bare-knuckle approach, these essays descend directly from those of William Hazlitt, who advised his fellow-progressives to pull no punches. Samanth Subramanian, The New Yorker, "The Prescient Anger of Arundhati Roy," 12 June 2019 The tattoo itself is a line drawing of a flame that appears to be coming out of the knuckle on Turner's right index finger. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Sophie Turner Debuts a New 'Dark Phoenix' Tribute Tattoo," 26 Jan. 2019 Alvin Gentry, the Pelicans coach, has a pair of bloody knuckles and a smoothie-drinkin' grin right about now. John Canzano, OregonLive.com, "Canzano: Trail Blazers end up a puzzling and pathetic no-show in Game 3 blowout," 19 Apr. 2018 Plastic knuckles Valve’s real coup is its controllers though. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "Valve's $999 Index VR headset promises 'high-fidelity virtual reality' with revolutionary controls," 30 Apr. 2019 The knuckle-size pear-cut diamond was bequeathed to her husband, the Texas energy scion Michael Herd, by his grandmother on the condition his bride never take it off. Chloe Malle, Vogue, "Inside Dating-App Bumble’s Bid For Global Domination," 18 Apr. 2019 Because it is always used on a cutting board, the broad blade of the chef’s knife must provide maximum knuckle clearance (lifting your hand up off the board), while the length varies with the individual. Francine Maroukian, Popular Mechanics, "How To Buy Kitchen Knives Like a Pro," 24 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

But what about snow biking, snowmobiling, and knuckle hucking? Jenny Mccoy, SELF, "The 2019 Winter X Games Starts This Week—Here’s What You Need to Know," 23 Jan. 2019 Griezmann's shot from about 25 yards away knuckled away from Muslera at the last moment and the ball went off his hands and into the goal in the 61st minute. Pete Grathoff, kansascity, "Uruguay goalie's blunder gifts a goal to France at World Cup," 6 July 2018 State after state punted on the opportunity to become the first to regulate before Wyoming, well, knuckled up. Josh Peter, USA TODAY, "Fight club: Legalized bare-knuckle boxing may be next big show in ring," 4 June 2018 As if love’s knuckled fist had slipped into a white glove, for five months hardly a cross word passed between us. Hartford Courant, courant.com, "A Time To Die And Be Reborn: Poems By Priscilla Wear Ellsworth," 19 Apr. 2018 Their relationship began last May with a white-knuckled, jaw-clenching, six-Mississippi handshake in Brussels. Ashley Parker, courant.com, "'Playful dominance': The touchy-feely relationship between Trump and Macron," 25 Apr. 2018 Also, despite what your grandmother says, there isn't any conclusive evidence on risk of arthritis tied to knuckle cracking. Ashley May, USA TODAY, "Why do knuckles crack? The answer might be in a mathematical equation," 30 Mar. 2018 So far, Green has said nothing so bare-knuckled, at least in public. George Russell, Fox News, "Trump Administration moves to get tougher on sexual abuse by humanitarian workers," 9 Mar. 2018 Outside his window, the azure waters of the Pacific knuckled on the white sands of Malibu. Jeff Stein, Newsweek, "Did 'The Post' Get It Wrong? How the Cover-Up of a Green Beret Murder Led to the Pentagon Papers," 31 Jan. 2018

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

Noun

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

Verb

1740, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for knuckle

Noun

Middle English knokel; akin to Middle High German knöchel knuckle

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Dictionary Entries near knuckle

knub

knubbly

knubby

knuckle

knuckleball

knucklebone

knuckle down

Statistics for knuckle

Last Updated

8 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for knuckle

The first known use of knuckle was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for knuckle

knuckle

noun

English Language Learners Definition of knuckle

: any one of the thick, bony parts (called joints) in your fingers
: a piece of meat that includes a joint from the leg of an animal

knuckle

noun
knuck·​le | \ ˈnə-kəl How to pronounce knuckle (audio) \

Kids Definition of knuckle

: the rounded lump formed by the ends of two bones (as of a finger) where they come together in a joint

knuckle

noun
knuck·​le | \ ˈnək-əl How to pronounce knuckle (audio) \

Medical Definition of knuckle

1a : the rounded prominence formed by the ends of the two adjacent bones at a joint used especially of those at the joints of the fingers
b : the joint of a knuckle
2 : a sharply flexed loop of intestines incarcerated in a hernia

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More from Merriam-Webster on knuckle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with knuckle

Spanish Central: Translation of knuckle

Nglish: Translation of knuckle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of knuckle for Arabic Speakers

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