Definition of musk
1a : a substance with a penetrating persistent odor obtained from a sac beneath the abdominal skin of the male musk deer and used as a perfume fixative; also : a similar substance from another animal or a synthetic substituteb : the odor of musk; also : an odor resembling musk especially in heaviness or persistence
Recent Examples of musk from the Web
Elk, wolves, reindeer, or musk oxen eat the dead grass underneath the snow by pushing the snow away with their horns, snouts, or hooves.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'musk'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of musk
Middle English muske, from Middle French musc, from Late Latin muscus, from Late Greek moschos, from Middle Persian *mušk-, from Sanskrit muṣka testicle, from diminutive of mūṣ mouse; akin to Old English mūs mouse
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
MUSK Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of musk for English Language Learners
: a strong-smelling substance used in perfume
MUSK Defined for Kids
Definition of musk for Students
: a strong-smelling material that is used in perfumes and is obtained from a gland of an Asian deer (musk deer) or is prepared artificially
Seen and Heard
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