skunk

noun
\ˈskəŋk \
plural skunks also skunk

Definition of skunk 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a : any of various common omnivorous black-and-white New World mammals (especially genus Mephitis) of the weasel family that have a pair of perineal glands from which a secretion of pungent and offensive odor is ejected

b : the fur of a skunk

2 : an obnoxious or disliked person

skunk

verb
skunked; skunking; skunks

Definition of skunk (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : defeat

b : to prevent entirely from scoring or succeeding : shut out

2 : to fail to pay also : cheat

Skunk

geographical name

Definition of Skunk (Entry 3 of 3)

river 264 miles (425 kilometers) long in southeastern Iowa flowing southeast into the Mississippi River

Illustration of skunk

Illustration of skunk

Noun

skunk 1a

In the meaning defined above

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Synonyms & Antonyms for skunk

Synonyms: Noun

bastard, beast, bleeder [British], blighter [chiefly British], boor, bounder, bugger, buzzard, cad, chuff, churl, clown, creep, cretin, crud [slang], crumb [slang], cur, dirtbag [slang], dog, fink, heel, hound, jerk, joker, louse, lout, pill, rat, rat fink, reptile, rotter, schmuck [slang], scum, scumbag [slang], scuzzball [slang], sleaze, sleazebag [slang], sleazeball [slang], slime, slimeball [slang], slob, snake, so-and-so, sod [chiefly British], stinkard, stinker, swine, toad, varmint, vermin

Synonyms: Verb

beat, best, conquer, defeat, dispatch, do down [British], get, get around, lick, master, overbear, overcome, overmatch, prevail (over), stop, subdue, surmount, take, trim, triumph (over), upend, win (against), worst

Antonyms: Verb

lose (to)

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Examples of skunk in a Sentence

Noun

Her brother's a low-down, dirty skunk. he's nothing but a dirty, rotten skunk

Verb

we ended up skunking them, as our goalie was able to prevent the other team from scoring a single goal our football team consistently skunks our traditional rivals Thanksgiving after Thanksgiving
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The skunk continued down the property line and disappeared into the other backyards. Frank Abderholden, Lake County News-Sun, "On-deck observations from the backyard," 3 June 2018 When a search party finally corralled it Feb. 5 near Cool, the coyote had dwindled down to 15 pounds, sprayed by a skunk and suffered tick and flea infestations as well as a related blood disease. Benjy Egel, sacbee, "Coyote released to El Dorado County a month after being rescued from obstructing jar," 6 Mar. 2018 An officer arriving on the scene was unable to find the rambunctious skunk. Bruce Geiselman, cleveland.com, "Police arrest 3 suspects in suspected hit-skip car reported stolen: Lakewood police blotter," 4 Mar. 2018 The two main wildlife situations Animal Control will respond to are bats in a house or somewhere like a classroom, or where a skunk has bitten someone and is contained. Steve Lord, Aurora Beacon-News, "Aurora Animal Control focusing on domestic animals rather than wildlife," 18 May 2018 The first lesson: never get into a pissing match with a skunk and the president does it every day. Kathleen Gray, Detroit Free Press, "Former U.S. Speaker John Boehner entertains crowd at Mackinac conference," 31 May 2018 Critter alert This valley is full of raccoons and skunks, both loving pet food. Margaret Lauterbach, idahostatesman, "Keeping our roses sweet requires a vigilant fight against bacterial cane blight," 29 June 2018 Bats, skunks and foxes are the main sources of rabies in Arizona, ADHS said. Angela Forburger, azcentral, "Rabies cases on the rise in Arizona, health officials warn," 20 June 2018 Rabies is carried by mammals — usually wild animals like raccoons, bats, skunks and foxes — and spreads to humans when a carrier bites them. Andy Marso, kansascity, "After JoCo bat tests positive for rabies, health department warns residents of danger," 10 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Getting skunked Such discoveries are becoming rarer, however, as hunters grapple with a problem: fewer relics in circulation. Daisy Maxey, WSJ, "Coin-Roll Hunting: The Secrets of a Treasure-Seeking Hobby," 6 May 2018 The parochial interests of members whose bases were on the chopping block consistently skunked the endeavor. Jay Cost, National Review, "Good Riddance to IPAB, the Independent Payment Advisory Board," 12 Feb. 2018 Just like so many Mizzou fans did on Saturday at Memorial Stadium watching what is now Odom’s product get skunked 35-3 by Purdue. Vahe Gregorian, kansascity, "Debacle against Purdue cranks up heat on Mizzou coach Barry Odom — and it should," 16 Sep. 2017 Overcast and somewhat cool temperatures at Mandeville High School were John Curtis battled Covington for a 7-0 win and Riverside Academy skunked Mandeville 28-0. David Grunfeld, NOLA.com, "Get your mind off of Hurricane Harvey and check out the photos from the Mandeville prep football jamboree," 26 Aug. 2017 For someone who in the past felt lucky to find a few morels — and more than once had been skunked — this seemed nothing short of miraculous. Bill Sherwonit, Alaska Dispatch News, "Confessions of a morel hunter," 5 Aug. 2017 EAGLE LAKE Fishing continues to be slow with most anglers getting skunked or picking up just one or two trout. sacbee, "Salmon season off to slow start, but there are signs of hope," 31 July 2017 Because skunk spray is an oil and Dawn removes oil from animals so well, Dawn is a good tool in your arsenal of pet de-skunking. 5. Emily Main, Fox News, "7 summer pet problems solved," 11 July 2017 Jeff Alworth, the author of The Beer Bible, says that sun and even artificial light will skunk a beer. Danielle Tullo, Cosmopolitan, "13 Ways You're Drinking Wrong," 24 Nov. 2015

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

Noun

1634, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1843, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for skunk

Noun

earlier squuncke, from a Massachusett reflex of Algonquian *šeka·kwa, from šek- urinate + -a·kw fox, fox-like animal

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Dictionary Entries near skunk

skull-pan

skull session

skun

skunk

Skunk

skunk bear

skunkbill

Statistics for skunk

Last Updated

31 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for skunk

The first known use of skunk was in 1634

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More Definitions for skunk

skunk

noun

English Language Learners Definition of skunk

: a small black-and-white North American animal that produces a very strong and unpleasant smell when it is frightened or in danger

: a very bad or unpleasant person

skunk

noun
\ˈskəŋk \

Kids Definition of skunk

: a North American animal related to the weasels that has coarse black-and-white fur and can squirt out a fluid with a very unpleasant smell

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Comments on skunk

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