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

France-Argentina was a white-knuckle ride, full of quick strikes, abrupt shifts in fortune and, of course, goals. Christopher Clarey, New York Times, "Benjamin Pavard, and His World Cup Highlight, Came Out of Nowhere," 4 July 2018 Davidson shows off his new knuckle tattoos on Instagram. Samantha Sasso, refinery29.com, "Tattoos Unlock The Mystery Of Ariana Grande & Pete Davidson's Relationship," 9 July 2018 However, Finn could be seen in various B-roll throughout these episodes, wearing a jean jacket and showing off her knuckle tattoos. Anne Nickoloff, cleveland.com, "Cleveland musician Madeline Finn cut from 'American Idol' competition," 1 Apr. 2018 The windshield was cracked and the man had small cuts on his knuckles, but declined medical attention. Kimberly Fornek, chicagotribune.com, "Police blotter: Darien woman charged with driving under influence of drugs, driving without headlights and in the wrong lane," 18 Mar. 2018 White-knuckle travelers beware: The airports below are notorious for their tricky, and oftentimes terrifying, runways. Amanda Greene, Woman's Day, "10 Terrifying Airport Runways," 27 Apr. 2011 The shelves of Better’s Grocery held pickled onions; the meat counter offered pig knuckles. Tim Prudente, baltimoresun.com, "Collapse: The rise and deadly fall of a Baltimore rowhouse," 12 July 2018 If calling your friend’s name and shaking their shoulders doesn’t work, Stoner suggests rubbing their sternum (breastbone) with your knuckles or pinching their earlobe. Natasha Lavender, SELF, "What to Do if Your Friend Is Passed Out Drunk," 26 Feb. 2019 In the background of her pictures, her boyfriend of over a year can be seen biting down on his knuckles, and generally freaking out over his hot girlfriend. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Wells Adams Lost All Chill Over Sarah Hyland at the Vanity Fair Oscars Party," 26 Feb. 2019

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

29 Apr 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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