spunk

noun
\ˈspəŋk \

Definition of spunk 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a woody tinder : punk

b : any of various fungi used to make tinder

2 : mettle, pluck

spunk

verb
spunked; spunking; spunks

Definition of spunk (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

dialect

: to show spirit usually used with up

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Synonyms & Antonyms for spunk

Synonyms: Noun

backbone, constancy, fiber, fortitude, grit, grittiness, guts, intestinal fortitude, pluck

Antonyms: Noun

spinelessness

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Examples of spunk in a Sentence

Noun

That little girl has a lot of spunk. had the spunk to overcome a severe physical disability

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But the real therapy doesn’t kick in until the patient, a divorced, garden-variety neurotic named Laura (played with an appealing mix of spunk and brokenness by Vera Farmiga), embarks on that staple of Hollywood renewal: the road trip. Michael O’sullivan, kansascity, "‘Boundaries’: Pot-dealing Christopher Plummer plus adorable dogs equals fun road movie," 5 July 2018 If some of the traditional events showed off a dog's good breeding, others showed off their spunk and athleticism. Matthew Dolan, Detroit Free Press, "Prized pooches pampered, praised at Detroit Kennel Club annual show," 24 June 2018 But the real therapy doesn't kick in until the patient, a divorced, garden-variety neurotic named Laura (played with an appealing mix of spunk and brokenness by Vera Farmiga ), embarks on that staple of Hollywood renewal: the road trip. Michael O'sullivan, chicagotribune.com, "'Boundaries' review: A family road trip to reconciliation and maybe, understanding," 28 June 2018 Rachel has an innate spunk, a natural beauty and inherent charm and likability, which is so important for the role of Midge and the audience's willingness and desire to go on her journey. Rebecca Ford, The Hollywood Reporter, "How to Cast Serial Killers and Wrestlers," 18 June 2018 For a while, McCarthy and Chelmsford’s spunk kept them in the game. Josh Schafer, BostonGlobe.com, "Needham gets past Natick, advances to boys’ state volleyball final," 19 June 2018 At Gonzaga, Laura has used that spunk to establish herself as one of the Zags’ X-factors. Lindsay Schnell, USA TODAY, "Laura Stockton, like her dad did, delivers drive, grit and assists for Gonzaga," 6 Mar. 2018 The girl who had no choice but to develop grit and spunk, to look out for herself. Jessica Knoll, Time, "Jessica Knoll's New Book, The Favorite Sister, Explores Ambition and Motherhood," 31 May 2018 Kathryn Newton displays spunk and style as the mischievous Amy. Hal Boedeker, OrlandoSentinel.com, "'Little Women': PBS honors a classic," 10 May 2018

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

Noun

1582, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1840, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for spunk

Noun

Scottish Gaelic spong sponge, tinder, from Middle Irish spongc, from Latin spongia sponge

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Dictionary Entries near spunk

spunge

spun glass

spun hay

spunk

spunkie

spunky

spun rayon

Statistics for spunk

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for spunk

The first known use of spunk was in 1582

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More Definitions for spunk

spunk

noun

English Language Learners Definition of spunk

: spirit, courage, and determination

spunk

noun
\ˈspəŋk \

Kids Definition of spunk

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More from Merriam-Webster on spunk

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with spunk

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for spunk

Spanish Central: Translation of spunk

Comments on spunk

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