Meaning of shank in English:


Pronunciation /ʃaŋk/

Translate shank into Spanish


  • 1often shanksA person's leg, especially the part from the knee to the ankle.

    • ‘the old man's thin, bony shanks showed through his trousers’
    1. 1.1The lower part of an animal's foreleg.
      ‘many fast animals have long shanks or calves’
      • ‘The horse's plastinated shanks and neck muscles convey an impression of overwhelming power.’
      • ‘I slipped on the severed shank of a buffalo and fell hard into a ditch.’
      • ‘Kristin Collins stood directly in front of the handsome racehorse, facing him, yanking on his lead shank with all her might.’
      • ‘Ritually tattooed from his waist to his knees, the Maori artist gently paints the bull's skinny shanks.’
    2. 1.2The shank of an animal's leg as a cut of meat.
      ‘meals like ham hocks and lamb shanks are cooked with reasonably priced cuts of meat’
      • ‘To follow, there's dum ka kid gosht: lamb shanks cooked in gravy in a sealed pot; or maybe Bombay Brasserie lamb chops, cooked in the tandoor.’
      • ‘If there is leftover gammon ham, lamb shank, or roast meat around, he suggests you shred it finely and add at the last minute, for the best of all possible borschts.’
      • ‘To keep the cost commendably low, the kitchen gravitates toward less expensive cuts of meat, braised shanks and briskets, and one-time trash fish like monkfish and catfish, finessed with Asian seasonings.’
      • ‘In a saucepan, add veal shanks, tongue, leeks, parsnips, celery root, garlic, red wine and veal stock.’
      • ‘Included on his menu is tangia, an heirloom recipe in which lamb shanks seasoned with cumin, saffron, nutmeg, and ginger are placed in a fat, terra cotta urn and cooked overnight in the coals of the public ovens.’
      • ‘Mains include the likes of lamb shanks lightly braised in thyme, sweet chilli and wine jus on roast potatoes and vegetables or panfried terekahi served with a creamy white wine, garlic and lemon sauce on broccoli and green beans.’
      • ‘Braised lamb shank in black pepper is curiously flat, as if the meat's natural flavor has been neutered.’
      • ‘For the veal shanks, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.’
      • ‘‘Try not to behave like a ravenous pig tonight, dear,’ she was saying in her diplomatic yet definitive way, as the lamb shanks and pots of stewed tripe thumped down on our table.’
      • ‘Someone is being stingy with the spices for the lamb shank, and veal Milanese seems like an interloper from another menu.’
      • ‘There are also gargantuan lamb shanks studded with lotus roots, giant tandoori prawns flown in from Sri Lanka, and leaning towers of tender salmon interspersed with okra and spicy tomato sauce.’
      • ‘I followed up with Caesar salad while hubby opted for a main of lamb shanks.’
      • ‘They initially had the recipe serve six, and they used lamb shanks to boot, but I didn't have 6 friends who wanted to eat lamb tonight, and the supermarket was fresh outa shank.’
      • ‘What I remember most clearly aren't his lamb shanks or inventions involving endive; it's Saturday breakfast.’
      • ‘And though the risotto is a bit oily, the lamb shank in the middle is served as such a tenderly appealing stew, the grains were bound to get short shrift.’
      • ‘Remove from the heat and, using a slotted spoon, transfer the shanks to a parchment-lined sheet pan and set aside, keeping warm.’
      • ‘And while the liquor eases the bloated, fibre-induced discomfort of our stomachs, we start thinking of running back into the strong, loving embrace of a veal shank.’
      • ‘The book batters vulgarity like a butcher with a shank.’
      • ‘She did, I will say this, fashion a shiv out of the lamb shank.’
      • ‘Preheat oven to 375 F. Cook the shank covered for approximately 3 hours until fork tender.’
      lower limb, shank
  • 2A long, narrow part of a tool connecting the handle to the operational end.

    ‘gouges vary in the amount of curve or sweep on the cutting edge and the form of the shank’
    • ‘The other patent, by J P. Curtiss, was for an improvement in screwdrivers by securing the shank in a solid handle.’
    • ‘Edmund Schade patented, on 6 May 1924, a different arrangement for securing the handle to the shank.’
    • ‘Mr. Shade's patent provided for the solid shank in the handle to be made with a series of lateral projections or wings graded in size toward the head.’
    • ‘Use an implement with narrow chisel or shovel point shanks spaced four to five feet apart and drive perpendicular to the direction of the prevalent winds.’
    • ‘Then run the round part of your hammer handle or screwdriver shank tightly up the joint to seal any gap that may be left.’
    • ‘The shank and bolster were next inserted with an insulating washer into the handle and ferrule and driven tight, thereby preventing axial movement between shank, bolster and handle.’
    • ‘As a result the chucking force in [this area] decreases, with the result that the shank… of the tool… cannot be held with a uniform chucking force over the entire length thereof.’
    • ‘In this type of construction, the shank of the screwdriver was forged and knurled on the handle receiving end and then tempered to the desirable hardness.’
    • ‘Combination tools are tillage and incorporation tools that combine disk gangs, field cultivator shanks, and leveling devices.’
    • ‘Smaller diameter shanks were offered on the no.50 and no.55 screwdrivers.’
    • ‘The tangs don't extend all the way through to the end of the handle, the chef's knives have no defined shank for grasping the blade easily, and a few of the knives have ends that have snapped off from abuse.’
    • ‘The needle's upper portion is called the shank.’
    • ‘Containing a groove to guide the knob shell and a hole for both the shank to sit into and to allow the spindle to pass into the lock, the rose ensures stable, guided turning of the doorknob.’
    • ‘Downward pressure is applied to the shank of the hook.’
    • ‘And the shank of the nail (the part that's driven into the wood) determines its holding power.’
    • ‘They are characterized by a rectangular-shaped crossbar that is wider and thicker than the shank or vertical element.’
    • ‘The steel shank did me a good deed to hammer off the padlocks.’
    • ‘They wrap a bit of newspaper round the shank of the nail.’
    • ‘Odum cancelled his scheduled demonstration after the steel shank of the propeller bent during an engine test.’
    • ‘Use an implement with shanks spaced 48-60 inches apart.’
    handle, butt, haft, grip, shaft, shank, helve
    1. 2.1The cylindrical part of a bit by which it is held in a drill.
      ‘To avoid this, use a cordless drill to drill a pilot hole, one slightly smaller than the shank of the nail.’
      • ‘When working with screws of larger diameter, a pilot hole of the same diameter as the shank of the screw should be drilled into the wood to a depth of 1/3 the length of the screw.’
      • ‘Then drill these holes on the band and joists, again using a drill bit one size smaller than the shank of the lag screw.’
      • ‘It was necessary to drill holes to pass the bolt shank very precisely in order to be able to easily pass through all the sections.’
      • ‘A pilot hole is a hole drilled with a bit that is slightly thinner than the shank of the nail.’
    2. 2.2The long stem of a key, spoon, anchor, etc.
      ‘all Roman lever keys have a tubular shank’
      • ‘Here he finds the familiar silhouette of the swallow in flight in a simple bit of sailor's hardware; the swallow's name in Greek is inscribed on the anchor's shank.’
    3. 2.3The straight part of a fish hook.
      ‘The involved skin area should be well stabilized against a flat surface as the shank of the fishhook is depressed against the skin.’
      • ‘Tied with hard nylon monofilament bodies and weighted with two brass pins parallel to the hook shank, Grant's flies were durable and realistic copies of a big trout's favorite meal.’
  • 3A part or appendage by which something is attached to something else, especially a wire loop attached to the back of a button.

    ‘On the 4 ‘wire end, lay a nail against the bead, and closely wrap the wire around the nail twice to create the shank.’’
    • ‘I could make thread shanks with buttonhole stitch as well as complete a neat French seam.’
    1. 3.1The band of a ring rather than the setting or gemstone.
      ‘Ring shank nails have a greater holding power than regular nails and are used specifically for this purpose.’
      • ‘After the shank was driven into the bolster, the bolster was placed into a die that squeezed the rings into the grooves and wings of the shank.’
  • 4The narrow middle of the sole of a shoe.

    ‘a rigid leather boot with a full shank’
    • ‘I was told by the company that it was the steel shank in the sole and there was nothing that could be done.’
    • ‘Now Martin fashions a 5 1/4 shoe with a hard shank, very large platform, and medium vamp for Schandorff.’
    • ‘And the shank of the shoe is flat too, so when I stand in first position, I can actually feel all five toes on the ground.’
    • ‘Hip enough for après-ski parties, these boots sport handcrafted stitching, lightly distressed waxed leather for durability, and a steel shank and multidensity footbed for support.’
    • ‘But the once-squishy sole is fortified with a steel shank.’
  • 5US informal A makeshift knife fashioned from a sharp item such as broken glass or a razor.

    • ‘he used a shank to threaten a guard and steal his uniform’
    • ‘He appeared by video link to have charges dropped against him for having a shank in his jail cell.’
    • ‘Authorities accuse the maximum-security inmate of possessing a "shank"—consisting of a screw with a pen as a handle—in prison in February.’
    • ‘I got to the point where I had a shank in my back pocket and a pager, because I wasn't living in a good neighbourhood.’
    • ‘A prison guard punched and kicked an inmate after being attacked with a shank, a court has heard.’
    • ‘Less than two weeks before his guilty plea, he plunged a shank into a correction officer.’
    • ‘He wouldn't carry a shank because he said it would be too tempting to use it. ’
    • ‘An inmate challenged prison officers by shouting, "I'm all tooled up, I've got a shank."’
    • ‘In CCTV footage played to the court on Monday, the officer could be seen placing a confiscated "shank" in an office.’
    • ‘He was convicted of possessing a "shank" or a homemade weapon while in custody in 2010. ’
    • ‘A man accused of stabbing his wife to death faces more charges after investigators say he threatened to stab a jailer with three shanks he made behind bars.’
  • 6Golf
    An act of striking the ball with the heel of the club.

    ‘he hit a shank with his tee shot and took double bogey’
    • ‘If you're prone to a shank, you'll probably find that even your good shots are closer to the heel. ’
    • ‘Moving your hips towards the ball as you swing can cause a shank.’
    • ‘First, understand that the shanks most often occur when the golfer has moved too close to the ball at impact . ’
    • ‘His miserable weekend was capped off by a dreaded shank on the 17th.’
    • ‘High-handicap golfers shouldn't fear taking their chunks and shanks onto the golf course in competition.’
    • ‘"I just hit a shank," he told reporters after a one-under-par 70.’
    • ‘He had no realistic chance of holing his bunker shot, but a shank is really a miserable way to finish at a U.S. Open.’
    • ‘He lost the struggle on the 17th tee, where he hit a shank well right of the green.’
    • ‘He hit another ball out of bounds, this one a shank that seemed to come from right out of your local driving range.’
    • ‘So there he was Sunday, seemingly in control, not having made a bogey throughout a long weather-delayed day of golf, and he hits a shank.’
    1. 6.1Tennis A mishit shot, typically one that is struck with the frame of the racket.
      ‘one of the worst shots the great man has ever played—a forehand shank from on top of the net’
      • ‘Helped by surely one of the worst shots the great man has ever played—a forehand shank from on top of the net—his opponent won five games in a row. ’
      • ‘A backhand shank got the tie break off to a poor start.’
      • ‘He began with a horrific forehand shank and quickly lost the first three points.’
      • ‘Bhambri went down against Lajovic in a blaze of unforced errors, some of them being ugly shanks which ended up in the stands.’
      • ‘I believe the bigger racket has helped him with his one-handed backhand by preventing a lot of the shanks.’
      • ‘Her slices were ugly shanks, her approaches to the net were usually followed by an unforced error, and her opponent might have as well played with one hand tied behind her back.’
      • ‘That's the first backhand shank we've seen from him.’
      • ‘He makes no mistake on the next point, though, and draws a rare shank from Nadal for a second break point.’
      • ‘Momentum seemed to fly away from his racket with a forehand shank that he sent into the railing on the opposite end of the court.’
      • ‘He let a double-break point opportunity slip, eventually giving up the game after back-to-back shanks.’


[with object]
  • 1Golf
    Strike (the ball) with the heel of the club.

    ‘I shanked a shot and hit a person on a shoulder’
    • ‘They are in their element talking about the technology, but after business execs hear the words ‘robust and scalable’ for the third time, their eyes glaze over and they're thinking about how they shanked the ball on the 14th hole.’
    • ‘I was playing golf at a local Houston course, and another player shanked his tee shot right into the side of my face.’
    • ‘But I am so tense that I'm topping the ball, shanking it (which I have never done), anything but hitting a straight one.’
    • ‘The way they're shanking wedges, they'll kill me.’
    • ‘The only blot on his card was that bogey five at the 17th hole where after a big drive close to a bunker he shanked his approach into another bunker and failed to get up and down.’
    1. 1.1Tennis Mishit (a shot), typically by striking it with the frame of the racket.
      ‘he missed an easy smash then shanked a backhand volley’
      • ‘Williams shanked a cross-court backhand long.’
      • ‘Becker won the next four games and took the tiebreaker when Johnson shanked a forehand on match point.’
      • ‘ She shanked balls full meters beyond the court's parameters.’
      • ‘He struck a wild forehand wide, put an easy backhand long, failed to return a serve and finally shanked a forehand.’
      • ‘Nadal shanked a forehand to give up two break points and then fired another just past the baseline.’
      • ‘Raonic missed an easy smash then shanked a backhand volley. ’
      • ‘After shanking a forehand on his first set point he found himself facing break point. ’
      • ‘She conceded four successive double faults, the ball either barely making it to the net or being shanked wildly out of court.’
      • ‘He shanked a forehand off his racket frame into the stands.’
      • ‘After shanking a shot early in that set, she cried out in Italian.’
  • 2US informal Slash or stab (someone), especially with a makeshift knife.

    • ‘I got shanked with a broken bottle’
    • ‘my friend pulled a knife and shanked him’
    • ‘If she tries that in prison she will probably get shanked in her sleep.’
    • ‘Malvo ambushed him, shanked him, and got him to reveal the name of his employer.’
    • ‘Khan is arrested, and later shanked to death in the prison block showers.’
    • ‘She looked like she'd have shanked him if the cameras hadn't been on.’
    • ‘If I don't get out of here soon I'm pretty sure I'm gonna get shanked.’
    • ‘He pissed off the wrong guy and got shanked.’
    • ‘He went to jail, got shanked, and has been in a vegetative state for the past several years.’
    • ‘There are also scenes of prisoners attacking guards, shanking each other, and discussing their murders, assaults, and mutilations in graphic terms.’
    • ‘You're ready for the really bad liars, the ones who will smile and shake with one hand while shanking you in the ribs with the other.’
    • ‘I donned your assassin's hoodie, shanking various unsavoury noblemen and escaping via precipitous rooftop parkour.’
    • ‘Even three years ago a stabbing was serious but now you could get shanked for dissing someone's trainers or holding a stare a second too long.’
    • ‘I have shanked a man in the neck.’
    • ‘You could get shanked because you owe somebody some money or somebody wants to try your manhood.’
    • ‘Because you shanked two prisoners to death, when you're clowning or threatening someone like me, people wonder what you're gonna do next.’
    • ‘Here, the wide-eyed innocent must wise up quickly or else they will get strangled, shanked or shot.’


Old English sceanca, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch schenk ‘leg bone’ and German Schenkel ‘thigh’. The use of the verb as a golfing term dates from the 1920s.