\ˈnek \

Definition of neck 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : the part of an animal that connects the head with the body

(2) : the siphon of a bivalve mollusk (such as a clam)

b : the part of a garment that covers or is next to the neck

2 : a relatively narrow part suggestive of a neck: such as

a(1) : the constricted end of a bottle

(2) : the slender proximal end of a fruit

b : cervix sense 2

c : the part of a stringed musical instrument extending from the body and supporting the fingerboard and strings

d : a narrow stretch of land

e : strait sense 1b

f : the part of a tooth between the crown and the root — see tooth illustration

g : a column of solidified magma of a volcanic pipe or laccolith

3 : a narrow margin won by a neck

4 : region, part my neck of the woods


necked; necking; necks

Definition of neck (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to kiss and caress amorously

2 : to reduce in diameter

intransitive verb

1 : to engage in amorous kissing and caressing

2 : to become constricted : narrow

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Examples of neck in a Sentence


She craned her neck to see what was going on. A giraffe is an animal with a very long neck. He broke his neck in the accident. He likes T-shirts with round necks. He grabbed the neck of the bottle.


The young lovers necked on the park bench. They were necking in the corner of the room.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The surgeon made an incision from the temporal hair line, in front of Kevin's left ear, then pivoting back under and behind it, extending into his neck -- the standard location for hiding plastic surgery scars. Neil Steinberg, CNN, "How far would you go to be able to smile?," 13 June 2018 While New Japan officials are still determining the extent of the neck injury, NJPW announced Wednesday that Takahashi was cleared to return to Japan. Justin Barrasso,, "The Week in Wrestling: Tama Tonga Says Bullet Club Civil War ‘Has Been a Long Time Coming’," 11 July 2018 The gray itself is a shock of silvery white interspersed with some brown strands on the nape of my neck and along my cheeks. Jessica Berger Gross, Longreads, "Gone Gray," 10 July 2018 The outlet reports that after the incident, the EMT was reassigned to desk duty due to head and neck injuries. Mariah Haas, Fox News, "Heather Locklear might face legal action for allegedly attacking EMT: report," 6 July 2018 Left midfielder Tyler Pasher returned to the Eleven lineup for the first time in ages after dealing with a neck injury. Kevin Johnston, Indianapolis Star, "Motivated Indy Eleven fall short in 2nd game of homestand," 4 July 2018 Chancellor himself is a poignant example of those risks: He is done with football because of a serious neck injury. Larry Stone, The Seattle Times, "Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor’s departure elicits feelings of admiration, guilt," 3 July 2018 Kam Chancellor's announcement Sunday on Twitter that his neck injury will force him to stop playing football signals the end of an era in Seattle, home of the league's most dominant defensive force over the past half-dozen seasons. Nate Davis, USA TODAY, "As Seahawks' Legion of Boom disbands, is it time to anoint it NFL's greatest secondary?," 3 July 2018 The four-time Pro Bowl selection and two-time All-Pro announced that the neck injury that limited him to nine games in 2017 hasn't shown any improvement. Stefan Stevenson, star-telegram, "Seahawks' Kam Chancellor makes sobering announcement on social media," 2 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Think of a sauropod, and a species like Brachiosaurus may come to mind: Long-necked, long-tailed, straight-legged with giant bodies and small heads. Amina Khan,, "These long-necked, elephant-sized dinosaurs arose long before Brachiosaurus," 9 July 2018 Her dress, with a flowing train 16-feet long, was pure white, boat-necked, and minimal., "After generations of aristocratic weddings, one reflects modern Britain," 19 May 2018 That improvement will help address bottle-necking around the small streets of Gilbert's popular downtown. Lily Altavena, azcentral, "Parks, roads and more: 7 projects on the horizon for Gilbert taxpayers," 10 May 2018 Long-necked with eyelashes to die for just like her parents, the baby giraffe's umbilical cord was still attached on Tuesday. Meg Jones, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee Zoo's latest resident is 6 feet, 1 inch of adorableness," 22 May 2018 In one corner, a business-casual couple were necking in a cozy booth over white wine and small plates of charred swordfish. Tas Tobey, New York Times, "New Speakeasy Memorializes an Old-School Journalist Haunt," 31 Jan. 2018 There’s the annual molt, during which even the crows are disheveled and pencil-necked. Murr Brewster, The Christian Science Monitor, "Why every writer needs a tree," 13 Sep. 2017 Researchers on Wednesday described fossils of a long-necked, four-legged, meat-eating reptile called Teleocrater rhadinus. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, "Secret White House Visits: Now Easier Than Ever!," 14 Apr. 2017 There's a lot of rubber-necking going on because fans on both sides are into what's happening with the programs. John Canzano,, "Ducks and Beavers football programs provide summer fireworks," 19 May 2017

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


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


1842, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for neck


Middle English nekke, from Old English hnecca; akin to Old High German hnac nape

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Statistics for neck

Last Updated

27 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for neck

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

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More Definitions for neck



English Language Learners Definition of neck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the part of the body between the head and the shoulders

: the part of a piece of clothing that fits around your neck

: a long and narrow part of something : a part that is shaped like a neck



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

: to kiss for a long time in a sexual way


\ˈnek \

Kids Definition of neck

1 : the part of the body between the head and the shoulders

2 : the section of a garment covering or nearest to the part connecting the head with the body

3 : something that is long and narrow or that connects two larger parts a neck of land the neck of a bottle

neck and neck

: so nearly equal (as in a race or election) that one cannot be said to be ahead of the other

Other Words from neck

necked \ˈnekt \ adjective


\ˈnek \

Medical Definition of neck 

1a : the usually narrowed part of an animal that connects the head with the body specifically : the cervical region of a vertebrate

b : the part of a tapeworm immediately behind the scolex from which new proglottids are produced

2 : a relatively narrow part suggestive of a neck: as

a : a narrow part of a bone the neck of the femur

b : cervix sense 2

c : the part of a tooth between the crown and the root

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Comments on neck

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


a state of commotion or excitement

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