\ ˈhwak How to pronounce whack (audio) , ˈwak\
whacked; whacking; whacks

Definition of whack

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to strike with a smart or resounding blow whack the ball
b : to cut with or as if with a whack : chop
2 chiefly British : to get the better of : defeat
3 slang : murder, kill

intransitive verb

: to strike a smart or resounding blow



Definition of whack (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a smart or resounding blow also : the sound of or as if of such a blow
b : a critical attack
4a : an opportunity or attempt to do something take a whack at it
b : a single action or occasion borrowed $50 all at one whack
out of whack
1 : out of proper order or shape threw his knee out of whack
2 : not in accord feeling out of whack with her contemporaries— S. E. Rubin

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Other Words from whack


whacker noun

Examples of whack in a Sentence

Verb She whacked the piñata with a stick. The old man lifted his cane and whacked the mugger on the head. They were whacking through the jungle with their machetes. He got whacked by mobsters. Noun The pile of books hit the floor with a whack. took a whack at solving the math problem
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb For his part, Reeves is hoping that his record standing alongside Bryant while the governor whacked away at the state income tax and unemployment will keep him in good stead with fiscal conservatives. Alexandra Desanctis, National Review, "Republican Remains Favored in ‘Surprisingly Competitive’ Mississippi Governor’s Race," 23 Oct. 2019 So is anticipating what the situation will look like a dozen whacks into the future. Steve Rubenstein, SFChronicle.com, "World champ croquet player shows up in Oakland. Mobs do not materialize," 20 Oct. 2019 The man was weed whacking on a sidewalk at Ocean Avenue and Shirley Lane when the tree fell across the road and landed on him, Battalion Chief Jonathan Paige said. Zach Murdock, courant.com, "Thousands without power in Connecticut Friday afternoon as crews continue cleanup after powerful storm," 18 Oct. 2019 But hey, a bunch of adults whacking little balls with wooden sticks probably looked pretty odd when golf first came around. David Kushner, Outside Online, "Can Video Games Replace the Outdoors?," 8 Oct. 2019 My concern is that US policy has no equivalent assistance and infrastructure capacity and the President wants to whack all aid to the region. Tovin Lapan, Fortune, "Trump Administration Turnover Leads to Foreign Policy Turmoil," 23 Aug. 2019 And on the basketball front: • Oregon continues to rebuild its roster after getting whacked by attrition. Jon Wilner, The Mercury News, "Hotline newsletter: Yes, Sports Illustrated ranked Stanford’s fake Tree over Colorado’s real buffalo (and loads more)," 16 Aug. 2019 From Lake Guntersville, Captain Mike Carter continues to whack jumbo bass with the jumbo Wake Shad lure, fishing it over scattered grass in 2 to 4 foot depths in the first hours of daylight—a recent lunker went close to 7 pounds. Frank Sargeant, al, "Get Friday Fishing Report, plus info on conservation banquet in Birmingham," 16 Aug. 2019 Google has already been whacked with the antitrust hammer several times in Europe and elsewhere. David Meyer, Fortune, "Randall Stephenson’s Big Challenge: CEO Daily," 10 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Daniel’s pent-up frustration eventually explodes in a violent attack on Sherry, and the rest of the film involves the family’s effort to confront him and to endure what is, in effect, a new and unlivable world, blown suddenly out of whack. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, "What to Stream This Weekend: “Burning Cane”," 9 Nov. 2019 As prolific Hawks guard Trae Young started his first game in a week 0 for 8 from the field Tuesday, out of sorts and out of whack, the Spurs had two basic reactions. Jeff Mcdonald, ExpressNews.com, "Trae Young’s second half shoots Hawks past Spurs," 6 Nov. 2019 That’s not to say there aren’t activities that might throw the system out of whack. Ryan Kost, SFChronicle.com, "Dopamine fasting: How Silicon Valley is trying to hack our brains," 5 Nov. 2019 Griffin’s absence throws the planning out of whack. Vince Ellis, Detroit Free Press, "Derrick Rose is not starting. What else can Detroit Pistons do to address slow starts?," 28 Oct. 2019 These large, complex systems can absorb some changes—but too many changes means the systems get thrown too far out of whack to recover. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "As the Arctic heats up, what’s in store for its food webs?," 26 Oct. 2019 But a series of adverse ecological events have jolted the region’s marine ecosystem out of whack. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Voracious Purple Sea Urchins Are Ravaging Kelp Forests on the West Coast," 26 Oct. 2019 If so, are both private and public markets out of whack because years of cheap capital allowed venture funds to slide into carelessness? Wired, "Stumbles at Uber and WeWork Don't Mean the End of Tech," 3 Oct. 2019 And unlike the other Black Hood next door, Hal stays down — because Alice gives him a second whack for good measure. Jessica Macleish, Teen Vogue, ""Riverdale" Recap Season 2 Episode 21: Some People Just Want to Watch Riverdale Burn," 10 May 2018

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


1719, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


1736, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for whack


probably imitative of the sound of a blow

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Statistics for whack

Last Updated

13 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for whack

The first known use of whack was in 1719

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More Definitions for whack


How to pronounce whack (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of whack

 (Entry 1 of 2)

informal : to hit (someone or something) with great force
US, informal : to reduce (something) by a large amount
US slang : to murder or kill (someone)



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

: the act of hitting someone or something with great force
: the sound made when something is hit hard
British : a share or portion of something


\ ˈhwak How to pronounce whack (audio) , ˈwak\
whacked; whacking

Kids Definition of whack

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to hit with a hard noisy blow The batter whacked the ball.



Kids Definition of whack (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a hard noisy blow I gave the ball a whack.
2 : the sound of a hard noisy blow
out of whack
: not in good working order or shape

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More from Merriam-Webster on whack

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for whack

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with whack

Spanish Central: Translation of whack

Nglish: Translation of whack for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of whack for Arabic Speakers

Comments on whack

What made you want to look up whack? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to speed up the process or progress of

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