nun·​chuck ˈnən-ˌchək How to pronounce nunchuck (audio)
variants or less commonly nunchuk
plural nunchucks also nunchuks
: a weapon that consists of two sticks joined by a short length of cord, chain, or rawhide : nunchaku
usually plural
For a time, he walked around with a set of nunchucks in a holster strapped to his leg, like a six-shooter …Patrick Redden Keefe… surprised a pair of burglars, one of whom was carrying a knife and two nunchuks.American Rifleman

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Requests included replacing the shift knob with a Nintendo Wii nunchuck controller (Atkin obliged). Jack Fitzgerald, Car and Driver, 20 July 2022 The kids might all be about Captain America and Iron Man these days, but nothing beats a classic like the nunchuck-wielding, pizza-munching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Cameron Jenkins, Good Housekeeping, 24 June 2022 Oliver began by making fun of Brnovich’s infamous nunchuck videos, which to a comedian is like shooting fish in a barrel, something Oliver acknowledged. Bill Goodykoontz, The Arizona Republic, 13 June 2022 Officers also found various weapons inside, including samurai swords, nunchucks and knives. Fox News, 12 Apr. 2020 During a search of the house in Wimauma, investigators also seized pistol powder, knives, hatchets, nunchucks, BB pellet rifles and handguns and books and DVDs on murder, mass killing, bomb-making and domestic terrorism, Fox 13 Tampa reported. Fox News, 5 Oct. 2019 Most candles extinguished by nunchucks in one minute Xie Desheng snuffed out 52 open flames with nothing but ninja-like precision. Scottie Andrew, CNN, 8 Sep. 2019 Also declared unconstitutional have been New York State’s ban on nunchucks and Connecticut’s ban on transporting a police baton when moving it to a new home. David B. Kopel, National Review, 12 Sep. 2019 Sarafina Bush's deliberately tacky costumes are a hoot, and the frequent dance numbers, many of them incorporating martial arts moves (and nunchucks as well!), are a lot of fun. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, 24 July 2019 See More

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

Word History


probably representing Anglicization of nunchaku (with stress shift and deletion of final vowel)

Note: Alternatively, final vowel loss may reflect devoicing of -u in Japanese.

First Known Use

1970, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of nunchuck was in 1970

Dictionary Entries Near nunchuck

Cite this Entry

“Nunchuck.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Jan. 2023.

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