Meaning of knacker in English:


Pronunciation /ˈnakə/

Translate knacker into Spanish


  • 1British A person whose business is the disposal of dead or unwanted animals, especially those whose flesh is not fit for human consumption.

    ‘The intention would be to have dead animals collected from farms by the local knacker man and then sent for rendering.’
    • ‘‘In the Fall’ tells of an old horse being sold to the knacker by a family who lack the means to feed it through another winter and who need the pittance it will bring.’
    • ‘He explains that there was a mistake - the vet had just bought the van from the knacker and had not yet painted out the old name.’
    • ‘Currently the UK authorities are proposing to contract hunt kennels and licensed knacker operators to collect fallen stock from farms from whence they would be taken onwards to rendering plants.’
    • ‘If under the new Scheme renderers are able to collect as well as dispose, we could well see a further demise of the knacker industry.’
    • ‘The authorities want us to upgrade our facilities to those of knacker men but we can't afford that kind of investment."’
  • 2knackersBritish vulgar slang Testicles.

  • 3Irish informal, derogatory An uncouth or loutish person.

    • ‘Even better we should make an island made of the scrap they've dumped off the west coast somewhere, transport all the knackers in Ireland to it and let them live there.’
    • ‘Singing should break down all barriers, you can be from anywhere, unless you sing like a knacker which is what she does.’
    exhaust, drain, enervate, tire, fatigue, wear out, weary, debilitate, jade


[with object] informal British
  • 1Tire (someone) out.

    • ‘this weekend has really knackered me’
    • ‘And after last night's shenanigans I'm absolutely knackered.’
    • ‘Bless him, by this point it was about quarter to two in the morning and he was knackered so I forgive him for being a bit confused.’
    • ‘I had every intention of arriving early and leaving early as it was a ‘school night’ and I was knackered after quite a few late nights at work.’
    • ‘It doesn't help that I'm completely knackered after staying up till about 2 in the morning drinking whiskey.’
    • ‘I am knackered today, and think I need an early night tonight!’
    • ‘Basically, anything above a brisk, short stroll and I'm knackered.’
    • ‘Near midnight, a couple of friends of hers came over and wanted us all to go out, but since I was knackered, I declined.’
    • ‘It's safe to say this weekend has really knackered me out.’
    • ‘This was a really great day's walking, I'm knackered now, I've done about 19 miles.’
    • ‘I'm too knackered to type more, as I haven't had any decent sleep for 72 hours.’
    • ‘I was knackered last night so I went to bed relatively early for me.’
    • ‘After 48 hours on the road, I'm knackered.’
    • ‘I'm knackered already because of a poor night's sleep and there will be little opportunity to catch up during the week.’
    • ‘My shoulders ache, I'm knackered already and I don't feel like doing any work.’
    • ‘Everything is fine. I've just been out a lot this week and now I'm knackered with a monster hangover.’
    • ‘I am supposed to be going dancing but I am knackered, so I will probably stay in and feel sorry for myself instead.’
    • ‘Suddenly it's Thursday, which is the end of my working week, and I'm knackered.’
    • ‘I could really do with catching up on some sleep too because, to be honest, I'm totally knackered.’
    • ‘I had to have a little snooze this afternoon as I was completely knackered.’
    • ‘Woke up already feeling knackered this morning, which is never a good start to the day.’
  • 2Damage (something) severely.

    • ‘I knackered my ankle playing on Sunday’
    • ‘My windscreen wipers are knackered and it's snowing buckets.’
    • ‘The teaching job really knackered my confidence.’
    • ‘When I work a 12 hour day, without a break, like today, the last thing I want to find at the end of it is that my bloody phone handset is knackered.’
    • ‘Mather's quarrel with his body began in March when he knackered his shoulder against France, putting him out of the rest of the regular season.’
    • ‘The water pump was knackered by a poorly replaced timing chain (I think).’
    • ‘Certainly for today at least, the Labour campaign is knackered.’
    • ‘Last night I ran an iPod software update and it knackered my iPod up.’
    • ‘Anyway, before you start to panic, I was only there to visit a friend, who had a bit of a fall over the weekend and knackered his knee.’
    • ‘We have been told so often that Scottish football is knackered that we have come to believe it.’
    • ‘But my battery was knackered, and in the weak, red glow of the rear lights I couldn't really see anything properly.’
    • ‘The drink and the drugs have basically knackered my life.’
    • ‘Either way, it's annoying, but at least it doesn't mean my headphones are knackered, as I originally feared.’
    • ‘A year and a half of job-hunting has rather knackered my confidence, but I reckon I can fake it till I make it.’
    • ‘Well, for all who climb up and down Scafell there should be a severe health warning: ‘You will knacker your knees and hips if you do not take a stick with you’.’
    • ‘As this person says, if you learnt to type using an old-fashioned typewriter, you hit the keyboard hard, and it knackers normal keyboards in a matter of months.’
    • ‘If his knee injury hasn't knackered him completely there is no need to suppose he won't be as prolific as before.’
    • ‘No wonder his knee is knackered when you look at the number of overs he has bowled.’
    • ‘I have a new digital camera on my Xmas list as my current one is knackered.’


Late 16th century (originally denoting a harness-maker, then a slaughterer of horses): possibly from obsolete knack ‘trinket’. The word also had the sense ‘old worn-out horse’ (late 18th century). knacker (sense 2 of the noun) may be from dialect knacker ‘castanet’, from obsolete knack ‘make a sharp abrupt noise’, of imitative origin. It is unclear whether the verb represents a figurative use of ‘slaughter’, from knacker (sense 1 of the noun), or of ‘castrate’, from knacker (sense 2 of the noun).