pluck

verb
\ ˈplək \
plucked; plucking; plucks

Definition of pluck 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to pull or pick off or out

2a : to remove something (such as hairs) from by or as if by plucking pluck one's eyebrows

b : rob, fleece

3 : to move, remove, or separate forcibly or abruptly plucked the child from the middle of the street

4a : to pick, pull, or grasp at

b : to play by sounding the strings with the fingers or a pick

intransitive verb

: to make a sharp pull or twitch

pluck

noun

Definition of pluck (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of plucking or pulling

2 : the heart, liver, lungs, and trachea of a slaughtered animal especially as an item of food

3 : courageous readiness to fight or continue against odds : dogged resolution

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Other words from pluck

Verb

plucker noun

Examples of pluck in a Sentence

Verb

My sister plucked a white hair from my head. The hunter plucked the bird's feathers. plucking petals off a flower Firefighters plucked the child from the top floor of the burning building. He'd been plucked from obscurity and thrust into the national spotlight. a cat that was plucked off the city's streets last winter He plucked a stone out of the river.

Noun

It takes pluck to do what she did. She showed pluck in getting up on stage.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Isco plucked up the bird and took the animal to the sidelines to be released. Kelli Bender, PEOPLE.com, "World Cup Game Comes to a Halt so Spain's Gerard Piqué Can Save Bird Stuck on Field," 22 June 2018 The squirrel quickly plucks a bag of candy from the display and scurries out of the store. Kelsey Grey, idahostatesman, "This 'thief' was caught shoplifting from Disney's Magic Kingdom on camera," 12 June 2018 There comes a time in every great athlete’s lifecycle where they’re plucked from the crowd and placed in a vacuum. Conor Orr, SI.com, "Why Listening to Tom Brady Speak Has Reached a Point of Diminishing Return," 2 May 2018 Perdomo bucked all sorts of odds in 2016 when he was plucked from the Rule 5 draft by the Rockies, traded immediately to the Padres and successfully transitioned into the rotation midseason. Jeff Sanders, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Padres roster review: Luis Perdomo," 9 Jan. 2018 To keep her brows from getting too unruly, Skye plucks any hairs that are out of place and uses a brush and scissors to trim. Blake Bakkila, Health.com, "4 Products Emily Skye Uses for Full, Natural Brows," 12 July 2018 Some pieces were simply plucked from the detritus and left unchanged. Kevin Fagan, SFChronicle.com, "Wine Country artists find new life, inspiration in the wreckage of studios," 9 July 2018 In less than six hours, a potato can be plucked from the ground, turned into fries and packaged in a box. Rachel Abrams, The Seattle Times, "Out of the fryer and into the Uber car: Idaho-based Lamb Weston trying to deliver crispy fries," 3 July 2018 Driven by their mandate, breeding facility staff plucked the hybrids out of their collection and destroyed them. Shanna Baker, Smithsonian, "The Quest to Preserve the Last of Castro’s Crocodiles," 21 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But the trend doesn’t pluck at the heartstrings of all. Meredith Goldstein, BostonGlobe.com, "Wedding bells are ringing, but justices of the peace aren’t getting the call," 18 June 2018 While national Democratic organizations admire O’Rourke’s pluck, most appear disinclined to divert resources to Texas, and O’Rourke made a show of spurning one of his party’s top PAC donors, Tom Steyer. Andrew Rice, Daily Intelligencer, "Can a Democrat Ever Win in Texas?," 10 July 2018 Despite the odds and the incoming ordnance, the citizens of Vicksburg retained their pluck and defiance to the bitter end. Russell S. Bonds, WSJ, "‘Vicksburg’ Review: The Falling Tide of Gray," 20 June 2018 If Friedenberg begins the play with refreshing pluck and sass for a part usually played for woebegone submission, her Ophelia goes jarringly musical theater in her own scene of madness. Lily Janiak, San Francisco Chronicle, "Youth gives some new energy to Marin Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet,’ but not enough," 2 June 2018 And behind the scenes, some White House advisers applauded these lawmakers’ pluck. Philip Elliott, Time, "The House GOP Is in Chaos," 21 May 2018 Their helpers, village women in colorful head wraps, used the yard to scrub clothes and pluck chicken feathers. Hedia Anvar, Longreads, "How To Build An Intellectual," 23 June 2018 In Ocean's 8, the criminals pluck European jewels from their eternal resting place, disrupting the idea that everything within the Met is unmovable and sacred. refinery29.com, "Pop Culture Is Breathing New Life Into Stuffy Museums," 18 June 2018 According to the Mayo Clinic, the best way to treat a jellyfish sting is to rinse the area with vinegar, pluck visible tentacles with fine tweezers and soak the skin in hot water ranging from 110 to 114 degrees Farenheit. Caitlin Keating, PEOPLE.com, "Over 800 People Stung by Jellyfish at Central Florida Beaches in Only Three Days," 13 June 2018

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

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pluck

Verb

Middle English, from Old English pluccian; akin to Middle High German pflücken to pluck

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Learn More about pluck

Dictionary Entries near pluck

pltry

PLU

Pluchea

pluck

pluck at

pluck-buffet

pluckedness

Phrases Related to pluck

pluck at

pluck up (the) courage

Statistics for pluck

Last Updated

10 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pluck

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

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More Definitions for pluck

pluck

verb

English Language Learners Definition of pluck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to pull (something) quickly to remove it

: to remove some or all of the feathers or hairs from (something)

: to take (someone or something) away from a place or situation suddenly or by force

pluck

noun

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

: a quality that makes you continue trying to do or achieve something that is difficult : courage and determination

pluck

verb
\ ˈplək \
plucked; plucking

Kids Definition of pluck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to pull off : pick pluck grapes

2 : to remove something (as a hair or feather) with a quick pull

3 : to seize and remove quickly : snatch She … plucked the envelope from the mailbox … —Andrew Clements, Frindle

4 : to pull at (a string) and let go

pluck

noun

Kids Definition of pluck (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a sharp pull : tug

2 : courage, spirit There was a … streak of pluck in him. —Sid Fleischman, The Whipping Boy

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Comments on pluck

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