1 of 2


ˈhäŋk How to pronounce honk (audio)
honked; honking; honks

intransitive verb

: to make the characteristic cry of a goose
: to make a sound resembling the cry of a goose

transitive verb

: to cause to honk
honk a horn


2 of 2


: the characteristic cry of a goose
also : a similar sound

Examples of honk in a Sentence

Verb We could hear the geese honking overhead. I honked at the car in front of me. Noun the honk of a horn
Recent Examples on the Web
And no one, NO ONE wants 42 geese honking around their home. Bychris Morris, Fortune, 16 Nov. 2023 Mumtaz rolled up her sleeves and had just begun filling her bottles when two men on a motorcycle whizzed past them, honking vigorously. Anant Gupta, Washington Post, 22 Sep. 2023 Protesters outside the Ben-Gurion House repeatedly honked car horns and called out to Blinken by name, pleading with him not to press for a cease-fire unless the hostages taken by Hamas were all released. Vivian Salama, WSJ, 4 Nov. 2023 Teachers held signs, chanted and rallied the crowd with bullhorns outside of Kellogg Middle School on Wednesday morning as cars passing by honked in support. CBS News, 1 Nov. 2023 Since 2018, attorneys for Susan Porter have been trying to overturn a California law that prohibits drivers from honking their horns for any reason other than warning of imminent danger. Alex Riggins, San Diego Union-Tribune, 31 Oct. 2023 Settlers in passing cars honked their horns in support. Susannah George, Washington Post, 30 Oct. 2023 Looking across the Serengeti at herds of honking wildebeest, most of us would be awed by the exuberance of these migrating masses, resplendent in their magnitude. Amy Brady, Scientific American, 17 Oct. 2023 Streets normally jammed with honking traffic are quiet. Shira Rubin, Washington Post, 12 Oct. 2023
Mecham screams, punctuated by honks and profanity, according to footage from inside his vehicle June 10 reviewed by Fox News Digital. Christina Coulter, Fox News, 29 Oct. 2023 But, due to the pandemic, those wanting to congratulate him had to drive by in a motorcade and honk — no in-person encounters. Alysa Guffey, BostonGlobe.com, 19 Aug. 2023 The strikers, many wearing red T-shirts, waved placards and acknowledged honks of support from passing motorists. Neal E. Boudette Brittany Greeson, New York Times, 15 Sep. 2023 Amid heavy police presence, Tuesday’s smaller crowd beat drums and blew vuvuzelas — prompting honks from supportive motorists — and vowed to continue to fill the streets and fight against the judicial overhaul. Shira Rubin, Washington Post, 12 Sep. 2023 The team of two says they’re often recognized around the neighborhood, receiving random hugs from neighbors, encouraging thumbs up and enthusiastic car honks. Zoey Lyttle, Peoplemag, 23 Aug. 2023 There’s a constant game of call and response: a honk, then screams from picketers. Jonah Valdez, Los Angeles Times, 16 Aug. 2023 Though Melrose carries less vehicle traffic than Sunset, honks still come. Jonah Valdez, Los Angeles Times, 16 Aug. 2023 Video posted to social media shows a man brutally beating Preston as passing cars honk and people shout. Amanda Lee Myers, USA TODAY, 15 July 2023 See More

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

Word History




First Known Use


1813, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1813, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of honk was in 1813

Dictionary Entries Near honk

Cite this Entry

“Honk.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/honk. Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


: the cry of a goose
also : a similar sound (as of a horn)
honk verb

More from Merriam-Webster on honk

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!