Definition of trunk
1a : the main stem of a tree apart from limbs and roots —called also boleb (1) : the human or animal body apart from the head and appendages : torso (2) : the thorax of an insectc : the central part of anything; specifically : the shaft of a column or pilaster
2a (1) : a large rigid piece of luggage used usually for transporting clothing and personal effects (2) : the luggage compartment of an automobileb (1) : a superstructure over a ship's hatches usually level with the poop deck (2) : the part of the cabin of a boat projecting above the deck (3) : the housing for a centerboard or rudder
3 : proboscis; especially : the long muscular proboscis of the elephant
4 trunks plural : men's shorts worn chiefly for sports swimming trunks
5a : a usually major channel or passage (such as a chute or shaft)b : a circuit between two telephone exchanges for making connections between subscribers; broadly : a usually electronic path over which information is transmitted (as between computer systems)
6a : the principal channel or main body of a system or part that divides into branches a nerve trunk the trunk of a riverb : trunk line
trunkfulplay \ˈtrənk-ˌfu̇l\ noun
Examples of trunk in a Sentence
the trunk of an artery
threw the rest of her books and tapes in the trunk and closed the lid
Recent Examples of trunk from the Web
Apparently Rocco had climbed into a nearby hole dug by a groundhog and found his way up through the tree trunk.
Others pass out bottles of Maalox -- an antacid said to curb the effects of tear gas -- from car trunks.
After trying to determine the source of the yelps, the officers discovered Rocco, a dachshund, stuck in a tree trunk.
A man accused of battering a woman and leaving her baby in the trunk of a car turned himself in at the Lake County Jail Friday morning, according to Gary police.
Due to the slightly high trunk line, visibility out the rear was limited, but the rearview camera eliminated that problem when backing.
Police say a check of the trunk revealed a broken nightstand missing from Claiborne’s bedroom.
The back-seat hardware eliminates folding seat backs that would expand the trunk.
Folding options are still quite sturdy and easier to fit in the trunk.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'trunk'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of trunk
Middle English trunke Anglo-French trunc, trunke, from Latin truncus trunk, torso
First Known Use: 15th century
TRUNK Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of trunk for English Language Learners
: the thick main stem of a tree
: the main part of the human body not including the head, arms, and legs
: the main or central part of something
TRUNK Defined for Kids
Definition of trunk for Students
1 : the thick main stem of a tree not including the branches and roots
2 : a box or chest for holding clothes or other articles especially for traveling
3 : the enclosed space in the rear of an automobile for carrying articles
4 : the long round muscular nose of an elephant
5 trunks plural : a swimsuit for a man or boy
6 : the body of a person or animal not including the head, arms, and legs
Seen and Heard
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