1
a
: the main stem of a tree apart from limbs and roots

called also bole

b(1)
: the human or animal body apart from the head, neck, and appendages : torso
(2)
: the thorax of an insect
c
: the central part of anything
specifically : the shaft of a column or pilaster
2
a(1)
: a large rigid piece of luggage used usually for transporting clothing and personal effects
(2)
: the luggage compartment of an automobile
b(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
5
a
: 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)
6
a
: the principal channel or main body of a system or part that divides into branches
a nerve trunk
the trunk of a river
trunkful 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 on the Web Why is the bark splitting on the trunk of my red oak? Neil Sperry, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 7 June 2024 The male giraffe body, with long forelegs supporting the trunk and neck – a shape to die for. Douglas R. Cavener, Discover Magazine, 6 June 2024 JoAnn Mills originally suggested to authorities that Howe had planted the murder weapons in the trunk of her and her husband's car in an attempt to frame them for killing the Hills, according to court filings. Emily Mae Czachor, CBS News, 30 May 2024 Her report also noted damage to the trunk and passenger side door. Sarah Blaskey, Miami Herald, 23 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for trunk 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'trunk.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Middle English trunke Anglo-French trunc, trunke, from Latin truncus trunk, torso

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of trunk was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near trunk

Cite this Entry

“Trunk.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/trunk. Accessed 20 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

trunk

noun
1
a
: the main stem of a tree apart from branches or roots
b
: the body of a person or animal apart from the head, arms, and legs : torso
c
: the main or central part of something
trunk of an artery
2
a
: a box or chest for holding clothes or other articles especially for traveling
b
: the enclosed space usually in the rear of an automobile for carrying articles
3
: the long flexible muscular nose of an elephant or a related mammal (as a woolly mammoth)
4
plural : men's shorts worn chiefly for sports
swimming trunks

Medical Definition

trunk

noun
1
: the human body apart from the head and appendages : torso
2
: the main body of an anatomical part (as a nerve or blood vessel) that divides into branches

More from Merriam-Webster on trunk

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