Definition of knock in English:


See synonyms for knock

Translate knock into Spanish


  • 1no object Strike a surface noisily to attract attention, especially when waiting to be let in through a door.

    ‘I knocked on the kitchen door’
    • ‘I knocked and waited but no one answered’
    • ‘She went to Mark's apartment and knocked on the door.’
    • ‘Tash was ready and waiting when David knocked at her door and ushered her into a waiting taxi.’
    • ‘Jim hung his coat on a peg in the waiting area and walked over to the door, knocking quietly as he opened it.’
    • ‘He knocked gently on the door, drawing the attention of every person in the room.’
    • ‘He first learned that a newspaper was on to him when his former mistress interrupted a dinner with a colleague to tell him the News Of The World had been knocking at her door.’
    • ‘I sort of blinked, decided I was dreaming again - I often dream there's someone ringing or knocking at the door - and drifted back to sleep.’
    • ‘I had just flatly refused to talk to anybody for a few days but Beverly came knocking at my door.’
    • ‘Motorists who somehow believe fines will go away if they are ignored will regret their action when bailiffs come knocking at the door.’
    • ‘Competitors from the Asian neighborhood are already knocking at Korea's door.’
    • ‘He knocked lightly at the door but there was no answer.’
    • ‘Her thoughts were interrupted when she heard Steve softly knock at the door before he came in.’
    • ‘He knocks loudly at the door, and it swings open with a ponderous creak.’
    • ‘Amy and I waited until I got sick and tired of waiting, and knocked lightly on the window.’
    • ‘The Slovenian driver was asleep in his cab when he was woken by a man knocking on the window.’
    • ‘Cameron knocked twice, and the unfamiliar face of Jason Phillips appeared behind a large oak door.’
    • ‘Elena knocked, straightening her suit coat, smoothing her hair.’
    • ‘There was no noise from inside, so she knocked loudly.’
    • ‘After a moment, he knocked louder, trying to compete with the noise.’
    • ‘A drunk guy had spilled his drink on me and I wanted to wash my shirt so I barged in without knocking.’
    • ‘When they approached and knocked on the bathroom door, they heard scuffling and the toilet flushing.’
    • ‘‘Next time knock before you come in’ I muttered, my face still beet red as I dried the plates.’
    bang, tap, rap, thump, pound, hammer
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Strike or thump together or against something.
      ‘my knees were knocking and my lips quivering’
      • ‘When I first met Madonna I was star-struck and my knees were knocking together because I was so nervous.’
      • ‘In fact, she could almost feel her knees knocking together.’
      • ‘His teeth were rattling in head, his legs had turned to jelly and his knees were knocking together like castanets.’
      • ‘Her body wouldn't stop trembling, her knees knocked together.’
      • ‘Her legs were numb and her knees knocked together as she stumbled on the uneven ground.’
      • ‘She tried to stand but decided her knees would knock together, so she sat back down.’
      • ‘Only his fast thinking kept their heads from knocking together.’
      • ‘Vibrations shot up her arm from the shock of the two steel blades knocking together.’
      • ‘Gavin reached down to it the same time she did and their heads knocked together.’
      • ‘Before he could strike, however, the man collided with him from the side, their foreheads knocking together with a loud crack.’
      • ‘When these cattle move side by side in the herd, their hollow horns knock together, producing a characteristic resonant sound.’
      • ‘Heart still knocking against her ribs, she strode anxiously to the front door, rising up slightly on her feet to peer through the hole.’
      • ‘My heart was knocking against my chest.’
      • ‘With the right body language, no one will even know your knees are knocking.’
      • ‘My knees were actually knocking when I left your studio after telling that story.’
      • ‘My heart was knocking against my ribs so hard I could hardly breathe, much less speak.’
      • ‘Not a leaf stirred; we could only hear our hearts beat wildly, knocking against our ribs like a trapped bird.’
      • ‘The pots and pans that dangled from her pack made a clanging noise, as they knocked together.’
    2. 1.2(of a motor or other engine) make a regular thumping or rattling noise because of improper ignition.
      ‘The only time you should consider using a higher-octane gas is if your engine starts to knock or ping.’
      • ‘This premature ignition (called knocking or pinging) lowers the power output and can damage the engine.’
      • ‘While driving your car, you can also listen to the engine: if you hear knocking, it's a good sign that you have trouble.’
  • 2with object Collide with (someone or something), giving them a hard blow.

    ‘he deliberately ran into her, knocking her shoulder’
    • ‘he knocked into an elderly man’
    • ‘The window suddenly swung open inside, the frame knocking him hard on the chin and sending him sprawling on his back.’
    • ‘You might accidentally knock heads with your partner.’
    • ‘Most of that evening was pretty much a blur, except I do remember when Adam knocked my elbow by mistake and made me spill a drink all over myself.’
    • ‘About five of the guys sneered at me while the others ‘accidentally’ knocked into my side.’
    • ‘As she stepped forward a couple of younger boys came pounding down the sidewalk and both knocked into her, sending her falling backwards towards the street.’
    collide with, bump into, bang into, knock against, hit, strike, be in collision with, run into, crash into, smash into, plough into, slam into, dash against, ram, jolt
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    1. 2.1Force to move or fall with a deliberate or accidental blow or collision.
      ‘he was hit from behind and knocked off his bike’
      • ‘the tornado knocked a tree onto a house’
      • ‘he knocked over a glass of water’
      • ‘She took a step forward and was nearly knocked over by a large man rushing past her.’
      • ‘Two lamps had been knocked over and broken glass covered the floor.’
      • ‘As she was reaching across the table, she accidentally knocked over her glass of Coke.’
      • ‘He gasped as the wind was knocked out of his lungs.’
      • ‘I stood up quickly, knocking my chair over in the process.’
      • ‘The storm knocked down trees and power lines in the area.’
      • ‘A cyclist was knocked off his bike on Brook Hill a couple of weeks ago.’
      • ‘Neighbours were beaten back by flames after knocking down the front door.’
      • ‘He was hit from behind and knocked to the ground.’
      • ‘The court heard Mr Smedley was knocked to the floor before his attackers kicked him twice in the stomach.’
      • ‘He was knocked unconscious and robbed in a vicious attack near Trowbridge Park.’
      • ‘An elderly man is critically ill in hospital after being knocked down when a teenager ran across a road and jumped into the middle of a bus queue.’
      • ‘A new youth shelter being built in Hutton recreation area has been knocked down by vandals even before it is completed.’
      • ‘On the east coast, television pictures showed bricks and tiles had been knocked from some buildings, but there were no indications of serious damage.’
      • ‘There are fears the 92-year-old building could be knocked down to make way for a housing scheme.’
      • ‘Suddenly the boat shifted and moved, throwing her to her knees and almost knocking Wes into the water.’
      • ‘A woman was left lying injured after being knocked down by a child riding an off-road motorbike on the pavement.’
      • ‘Just as I approached the door, a whirlwind in the form of a small child shot out of the room, colliding with me and knocking me into the wall.’
      • ‘Suddenly something struck him hard, knocking him to one side.’
      • ‘I squeaked in surprise, flinging my hand sideways and knocking half a dozen books off the shelf.’
    2. 2.2Injure or damage by striking.
      ‘she knocked her knee painfully on the table’
      • ‘you have had a setback that has knocked your self-esteem’
      • ‘Tom jolted out of his dream, wincing as he knocked his elbow against the bedpost.’
      • ‘Ruth fell and knocked her head quite hard on the table.’
      • ‘I sat up quickly and promptly knocked my head on the overhang.’
      • ‘Being the only single person in your group can be isolating. You start to wonder why you haven't got a partner and this can knock your self-esteem.’
      • ‘Do comments like that spur you on to drive harder or do they knock your confidence?’
      • ‘I charged at him, but the boy knocked me hard in the ribs, throwing me back.’
      • ‘He knocked my forehead hard, which gave a great deal of pain.’
      • ‘I stumbled to my feet, knocking my knee against a corner of the table.’
      bump, bang, hit, strike, crack
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3Make (a hole or a dent) in something by striking it forcefully.
      ‘he suggests we knock a hole through the wall into the broom closet’
      • ‘One rock knocked a four feet hole in a nearby wall and Mr Ayrton said some stones had been found three quarters of a mile away.’
      • ‘In one case installation of the computer was delayed a day, and when the team arrived the next morning they found that a hole had been knocked through one of the walls already.’
      • ‘Columbia broke into pieces during its return trip from space in 2003 because Nasa failed to spot that a hole had been knocked in its wing during launch.’
      • ‘Anywhere in the area of Amalfi or Ravello, 10 minutes in a taxi will knock a £20 hole in your pocket.’
      • ‘Ms Waterman says asbestos entered their flat through a hole which builders knocked in their wall.’
      • ‘Just down the walk, I found a hole knocked in a garden wall and a hundred bricks missing.’
      • ‘That's right: if your landlord complains that you're knocking holes in the walls, he or she is too strict.’
      • ‘This is particularly clever for old buildings where knocking new holes through walls can be tricky.’
      • ‘Thieves knocked a hole in the shop wall before making off with equipment valued at about £11,000.’
      • ‘Sure, it's exhilarating to read a new and undiscovered book that knocks my socks off… I think… I'm not sure it's really happened.’
    4. 2.4Demolish the barriers between (rooms or buildings)
      ‘two of the downstairs rooms had been knocked into one’
      • ‘To the right are two further rooms which could be knocked into one.’
      • ‘The café looks as if it had been two rooms knocked into one.’
      • ‘Georgieva gestures around her office, which consists of two rooms knocked into one.’
      • ‘Lord Rogers does live in London - he has two Georgian terrace houses knocked together in Chelsea.’
      • ‘The new facility, on Rectory Road, replaces the previous cramped and out-of-date building made up of four residential houses knocked together.’
      • ‘It seemed a small house from the outside, but on entering they could see that it actually consisted of several houses knocked together around a small courtyard.’
      • ‘It consists of the former Egyptian embassy and a one-time annexe to Russia's embassy knocked together.’
      • ‘It's a bit of a Tardis - two townhouses knocked together, with a long gallery at the back where the garden used to be.’
      • ‘She and her husband Derek live with their four children in Wapping, east London, in two former council flats knocked into one.’
      • ‘Three Georgian townhouses were knocked together in the 1970s when Edinburgh's planning regulations were looser.’
  • 3 informal with object Talk disparagingly about; criticize.

    • ‘Critics knock the X3 for its austere interior, but most BMWs tend toward the spartan.’
    • ‘That's because whenever they do, they never offer any praise, they will just jump straight in and start knocking what I've done.’
    • ‘I'm not knocking the company, but it's going to be too small for institutional investors.’
    • ‘So stop knocking the town you live in and be proud of what we have and what has been achieved here.’
    • ‘He was raised to think he's the greatest by his parents, who wanted to instill a strong sense of self in him, so it's hard to knock him for his attitude.’
    • ‘It's hard to knock this decision in political terms, and it has a defensible legal rationale.’
    • ‘We had a fair amount of possession and worked hard, I can't knock the commitment.’
    • ‘It is hard to knock a man with such charisma and unswerving comic timing, but anyone having had the pleasure of seeing him on stage before would have been disappointed at the lack of new material.’
    criticize, find fault with, run down, disparage, belittle, depreciate, deprecate, detract from, give a bad press to, cast aspersions on, scoff at, deride, jeer at, carp at, cavil at
    View synonyms



/näk/ /nɑk/


  • 1A sudden short sound caused by a blow, especially on a door to attract attention or gain entry.

    ‘There was a sudden knock at the door, the noise seemingly unnatural and loud in the silence that I had gotten accustomed to in the past half-hour.’
    • ‘She was gazing into the mirror, not really paying attention to the task at hand when a knock sounded at the door.’
    • ‘All of a sudden there was a knock at the front door.’
    • ‘About two minutes later, there was a short knock at the cabin door.’
    • ‘It was already very late into the night and Rosalind was beginning to doze off in her chair by the window when a sudden knock at the door startled her out of sleep.’
    • ‘He opened his mouth to speak but was interrupted by a sudden knock at the door.’
    • ‘At half-past six on the dot, a knock sounded on the door.’
    • ‘He nearly jumped out of his skin when the knock sounded at the door.’
    • ‘She was walking towards her bedroom when a knock sounded on the door.’
    • ‘A sharp knock sounded at the door, interrupting their conversation.’
    • ‘She must have dozed off, because the sound of a knock at the door made her nearly jump a foot in the air.’
    • ‘The sound of a knock at the door woke him from his reverie, and he walked quickly downstairs.’
    • ‘There was a loud, hard knock at the door.’
    • ‘Justin heard loud knocks coming from the front door.’
    • ‘As Willow was about to speak, a loud knock sounded on the door.’
    • ‘He smiled and leaned down to kiss her, frowning as a sudden knock sounded on the door.’
    • ‘I jumped as a sharp knock sounded at my door.’
    • ‘He heard another knock and the soft sound of a doorknob being turned.’
    • ‘There was another knock, this time louder, then the sound of the door opening.’
    • ‘There was no reply, just another knock, louder than the first.’
    tap, rap, rat-tat, rat-tat-tat, knocking, bang, banging, beating, pounding, hammering, drumming, thump, thud
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A continual thumping or rattling sound made by an engine because of improper ignition.
      ‘When added to gasoline in minute amounts, tetraethyl lead prevents engine knock and increases the gasoline's octane rating.’
      • ‘In the 1920s, lead was added to petrol, and this addition allowed vehicles to reach higher speeds without engine knock.’
      • ‘Petrol fuels contain a host of additives to enhance octane rating, lower engine knock and counteract water.’
      • ‘This is used to determine when to adjust ignition timing to control knock. - CAS’
      • ‘Lucas oil Octane Booster eliminates spark knocks, pinging, and dieseling while promoting clean fuel burn for fewer emissions and better mileage.’
      tap, rap, rat-tat, rat-tat-tat, knocking, bang, banging, beating, pounding, hammering, drumming, thump, thud
      View synonyms
  • 2A blow or collision.

    ‘the casing is tough enough to withstand knocks’
    • ‘No matter how well you drive, with such tight racing and constant jostling for places it is inevitable that you will incur a few bumps and knocks along the way.’
    • ‘Bumps and knocks to the head are quite common, particularly among children.’
    • ‘While the shell does protect the phone's internal components from everyday knocks and bumps, it is not waterproof, merely water resistant.’
    • ‘The bumps, jarring and knocks can damage the helmet.’
    • ‘Since one wall was completely knocked down two weeks ago, two more knocks have left the other cracked and weakened.’
    • ‘The front wings are plastic and can withstand 15 km/h knocks without damage which reduces repairs.’
    • ‘A player just took a hard knock to the head and is lying on the field.’
    • ‘At no stage during the match could he recall having sustained a knock to his head.’
    • ‘Jonathan Smith is expected to undergo a fitness test after sustaining a knock to his knee on Sunday.’
    • ‘Chelsea could be without William Gallas, who suffered a knock against Villa.’
    • ‘He suffered a bad knock on the head in the second half.’
    • ‘As the blood supply for the scalp is so good, any knock received tends to bleed profusely resulting in blood everywhere and bruising as a result.’
    • ‘He bent over a little and rubbed his head, it was already throbbing from before so another knock didn't make him feel any better.’
    • ‘One swift knock to the head knocked the guy out, and we left.’
    • ‘Head guards and helmets protect the skull and the brain from injuries caused by knocks to the head during sports and greatly reduce the risk of serious head injuries.’
    • ‘At present, an estimated three million people in the UK suffer from the condition, which weakens the skeleton so that a simple knock can snap a bone.’
    • ‘Of course with football being a very physical game there were always plenty of knocks to be taken, some leading to injuries and lay-offs.’
    • ‘The Rams' only other injury worry is over Chris Clarke, who took a knock to a leg during the game at Flixton.’
    • ‘Gashes and knocks that would put a professional footballer out of action for weeks tend to be shrugged off.’
    • ‘This time his injury was as a result of an accidental knock to his head as he was laying on a tackle.’
    bump, blow, bang, striking, beating, jolt, jar, jarring, shock
    blow, bang, stroke, hit, slap, smack, crack, buffet, punch, cuff, thump, box
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    1. 2.1A discouraging experience; a setback.
      ‘the region's industries have taken a severe knock’
      • ‘Scotland has become a harsher place and our image as a tolerant and open minded nation has taken a severe knock.’
      • ‘As the weeks passed, it became ever harder to make ends meet and a £140 servicing for Vivienne's car was a severe knock.’
      • ‘Steeton saw their chance of promotion from Division One take a severe knock when they were beaten 2-1 at Ardsley Celtic.’
      • ‘In the past couple of years, profits at many companies have taken a severe knock.’
      • ‘I've suffered a lot of knocks over the years, but I've survived them.’
      • ‘But this appeal has suffered two huge knocks of late.’
      • ‘After the knock suffered by the industry last year because of the Foot and Mouth crisis, tourism operators were hoping for rather better luck this year.’
      • ‘Hovingham's chances of lifting the divisional trophy took a knock when they suffered a shock defeat at Clifton Alliance.’
      • ‘The party has taken greater knocks in its history than this minor set-back.’
      • ‘In a nutshell, I hadn't suffered the same hard knocks and had little chance of knowing what was really important in life.’
      • ‘He seems like the kind of guy who has lived life and taken a few hard knocks along the way.’
      • ‘From Australia's point of view, having got so close and then losing was a big knock.’
      • ‘We're big enough to take the knocks when they're due, but is it so unthinkable sometimes to recognise and celebrate success?’
      • ‘There are enough hard knocks and challenges in life without us deliberately providing them for each other.’
      setback, reversal, reverse of fortune, rebuff, rejection, defeat, failure, difficulty, misfortune, bad luck, stroke of bad luck, mishap, bad experience, blow, body blow, disaster, calamity, disappointment, grief, sorrow, trouble, hardship
      View synonyms
  • 3 informal A critical comment.

    • ‘In recent seasons, the FA Cup has taken a few knocks from the critics, but in my eyes there is still a lot of magic associated with the competition.’
    • ‘If they want to get ahead, Ms McIntosh says, women have to be prepared to develop thick skins, and the confidence to take the knocks and criticism that go with a high-powered job.’
    • ‘This is no knock against Lucas, who does a fine job in his short scenes, but it is a structural problem that the film does not entirely solve.’
    • ‘The only knock is he lacks experience against elite-level competition.’
    criticism, disparagement, stricture, fault-finding, denigration, censure, reproach, reproval, condemnation, lambasting
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/näk/ /nɑk/


    knock it off
    • Used to tell someone to stop doing something that one finds annoying or foolish.

      • ‘Danielle, knock it off. The overprotective mother role doesn't suit you.’
      • ‘The couple who are renting the place next to mine spent the entire night fighting. They didn't knock it off until well past two in the morning.’
      • ‘If you're doing this as an attempt to Henry make break off his engagement with his fianceé, knock it off, because it ain't gonna happen!’
    knock me down with a feather
    • Used to express great surprise.

      • ‘But when I read it, you could have knocked me down with a feather.’
      • ‘I felt sure it was something physical like a virus, so you could have knocked me down with a feather when he diagnosed depression.’
    knock someone dead
    • Greatly impress someone.

      • ‘This album is trying too hard to be smooth and pleasing to the masses, meaning that Wright ends up crooning uninterestingly where she should be knocking us dead.’
      • ‘He is so confident that his new energy drink will knock them dead in the market place that he is planning to take on the likes of Lucozade and Red Bull.’
      • ‘I am 5ft 8in, size 8, and want to wear something that will knock him dead.’
      • ‘Mandy Siegfried proves herself a young comedienne who'll duly knock them dead from Mineola to Minnesota.’
      • ‘‘You're going to knock them dead,’ she stated firmly, ‘and you're more handsome than any of those actors.’’
      • ‘She had put on dark red lipstick and was wearing a dress that was sure to knock Chris dead.’
      • ‘Wear the pink strapless shirt in my second drawer - you'll knock him dead.’
      • ‘We've got an answering machine gag that seems to knock them dead every time.’
      • ‘I nodded and smiled faintly, ‘You're going to knock him dead tonight.’’
      • ‘Good luck for tonight: I'm sure you'll knock 'em dead!’
    knock someone into the middle of next week
    • Hit someone very hard.

    knock someone on the head
    • Stun or kill someone by a blow to the head.

      ‘If you knocked someone on the head and stole their wallet you would be punished.’
      • ‘Before Mackenzie could react, she was knocked on the head.’
      • ‘The next thing he knew something hard had knocked him on the head and he had awakened with a throbbing headache and an ugly bruise.’
      • ‘He was about to say something to her when the others realized it and knocked him on the head and dragged him away.’
      • ‘Godfrey had predicted prior to his disappearance that he would be knocked on the head.’
      • ‘Trying to break up a fight between his girlfriend and another girl, he was knocked on the head and then stabbed.’
    knock someone sideways
    • Astonish someone.

      • ‘the size of the demand knocked me sideways’
      • ‘The sheer wealth and size and richness of America knocked me sideways.’
      • ‘Every now and then, something came up which would completely knock you sideways.’
      • ‘When they performed this on TOTP, I was knocked sideways.’
      • ‘But Preston were knocked sideways by the shock of seeing their impregnable lead suddenly wiped out.’
      • ‘That said, most of what he plays washes over me these days - but once in a while, something comes along and knocks you sideways.’
    knock someone's block off
    • Hit someone very hard in anger.

      • ‘In fact, I scared one of them half to death when I walked through the door; she tried to knock my block off with a mop as she thought I was an intruder!’
      • ‘I'd like to see it myself, except that someone would probably recognize me and try to knock my block off.’
      • ‘I get home from school a few days later and my mother is looking like she wants to knock my block off.’
      • ‘The young man turned to look at me, and for a second there, I thought he was going to knock my block off.’
      • ‘He told Bellamy he would knock his block off if he ever set foot back in Newcastle.’
      • ‘The first time we met I thought he was going to knock my block off because I'd called him Bart instead of Bartholomew.’
      • ‘If I were that age - I'd knock his block off if I were his ‘so-called’ teammate.’
    the school of hard knocks
    • Painful or difficult experiences that are seen to be useful in teaching someone about life.

      ‘They will very soon get the shock of their lives and learn some very painful lesson in the school of hard knocks.’
      • ‘Unfortunately his father lost his fortune shortly thereafter, and Finlay instead received instruction from the school of hard knocks as he grew up amid grinding poverty in the Glasgow slums.’
      • ‘I've learned the hard way at the school of hard knocks.’
      • ‘But admissions departments should make the extra effort to look for signs of character traits, like persistence, imagination, and training in the school of hard knocks, that might be hidden in the numbers.’
      • ‘It is quite an honor for a working writer (one who has learned the craft in the school of hard knocks, rather than in a writing program) to be asked to teach a class like this.’
      • ‘‘The first year was difficult, no doubt about it,’ admits this graduate from the school of hard knocks.’
      • ‘So you again enter the catch - 22 situation, where you are either qualified but lacking in the experience department, or the wealth of experience you have gained in the school of hard knocks is wasted as you don't have the qualifications.’
      • ‘Foolishly, I had decided to learn California's unique motorcycle laws and driving rules through the school of hard knocks.’
      • ‘Being a person who bypassed college and enrolled directly in the school of hard knocks, I may not be the best source to ask about higher education.’
      • ‘Many respondents indicated that valuable learning was only possible via hands-on training in the school of hard knocks.’

Phrasal Verbs

    knock around
    • 1 informal Travel without a specific purpose.

      • ‘for a couple of years she and I knocked around the Mediterranean’
      1. 1.1Happen to be present.
        • ‘it gets confusing when there are too many people knocking around’
      2. 1.2mainly British Spend time with someone.
        • ‘she knocked around with artists’
    • 2knock someone or something around, knock around someone or something informal Injure or damage someone or something by rough treatment.

      • ‘the first couple of rounds of treatment knocked me around a bit’
    knock back
    British informal
    • 1knock someone back, knock back someoneReject or discourage a person making a request or suggestion.

      • ‘he applied for funding for nine different projects and was knocked back each time’
    • 2knock someone back somethingCost someone a specified, typically large, amount of money.

      • ‘buying that house must have knocked them back a bit’
    • 3knock something back, knock back somethingConsume a drink quickly and entirely.

      • ‘we knocked back a few beers’
      • ‘The recommended way to enjoy soju or sake, the national drinks of South Korea and Japan, is by quickly knocking them back in short, small shots.’
      • ‘We clinked glasses and I knocked my drink back, feeling the burn in my throat and the warmth in my stomach.’
      • ‘Drinkers across the social spectrum are knocking it back like never before and the pressure to join in has never been stronger.’
      • ‘Once again Hemingway mechanically picks up his glass, knocks it back in a single gulp, and slams it back down.’
      • ‘True beer aficionados know damn well there's more to enjoying a good brew than just knocking it back with detached abandon - sip, gulp, belch.’
      • ‘Pandora settled down again and enjoyed the mood: everyone was chatting or drinking, mostly vodka, knocking it back like Perrier water.’
      • ‘Vodka was limited mostly to the liquor cabinets of Eastern Europe until World War II, when Americans and the rest of Europe started knocking it back.’
      • ‘Some bars sell highballs for as little as 75 cents, allowing some people to knock them back like there's no tomorrow.’
      • ‘Four out of 10 men, it said, and two out of 10 women regularly knock back at least a bottle of wine in one session to land them in the binge-drinker category.’
      • ‘She poured herself a glass of wine and knocked it back and poured another, then turned to face him.’
    • 4knock something back, knock back somethingWork risen dough by vigorous kneading to expel air before baking.

    knock down
    • 1knock something down, knock down somethingDemolish a building or other structure.

      ‘the closely packed houses were knocked down’
      • ‘Some people are buying bungalows on the seafront, knocking them down and building another property.’
      • ‘They thought knocking the building down and replacing it with a new one would be a cheaper option.’
      • ‘He told the Institute of Chartered Accountants that it would cost far less to refurbish ‘characterful’ buildings than knock them down.’
      • ‘If the developer purchases the land it is believed he will either use the garages for the new properties or will knock the buildings down to create garden space for more marketable homes.’
      • ‘Unable to pay the £2.3m in repair costs or sell the near-ruin, he succeeded in getting planning permission from Perth and Kinross Council to knock the building down.’
      • ‘Why knock these amazing buildings down when they can be refurbished using some great modern architecture?’
      • ‘A decision was taken to knock the old building down.’
      • ‘The three options for Greenroyd Avenue available to the council are to leave things as they are, partly demolish the street, or knock the whole lot down.’
      • ‘After discovering a serious crack in one of the gable walls, they decided instead to knock the house down and rebuild it.’
      • ‘Only he failed to get planning permission and last week successfully fought a bid by the local council to knock it down.’
      • ‘The current owners, Ben Alder Estate, want to knock down the dilapidated building to construct workshops.’
      • ‘Mr Overton's showroom and workshop, a former hairdressing salon and a garage will all be knocked down in the summer of 2006 should plans go forward.’
      • ‘It followed reports that the premises might not be re-opened by the new owners as a meat slaughtering facility but would be knocked down and sold as a development site.’
      • ‘Some of the former police houses have already been knocked down and work has begun on the demolition of the old custody area.’
      1. 1.1Take machinery or furniture to pieces for transportation.
        • ‘I'm going to assume that you've already knocked the furniture down as flat as it will go’
    • 2knock someone down, knock down someonemainly British (especially of a vehicle) strike or collide with someone so as to cause them to fall to the ground.

      ‘I was nearly knocked down by a bus’
      • ‘The pedestrian went over the bonnet of a car after she was knocked down by a driver who had taken his friend's vehicle, the court was told.’
      • ‘The two boys jumped on him and knocked him down to the carpeted floor.’
      • ‘A villager managed to film the attack before he was knocked down, his camera smashed and his arm broken.’
      • ‘A child who was standing by the roadside with his mother also died after he was knocked down by one of the vehicles.’
      • ‘My five-year-old daughter was nearly knocked down by a man driving a van and chatting on the phone.’
    • 3knock something down, knock down something(at an auction) confirm the sale of an article to a bidder by a knock with a hammer.

      ‘confusion arose during the auction and the painting was knocked down to another bidder’
      • ‘On Sunday, November 3 a large crowd turned out as auctioneer Matt Dunne set to with the gavel to knock items down to the highest bidder.’
      1. 3.1 informal Reduce the price of an article.
        • ‘the manager offered to knock the price down’
        • ‘The vandalism and burglaries in the area are knocking house prices down.’
        • ‘On the day of exchange they knocked the price down by £85,000.’
        • ‘Originally priced $35, it was knocked down to $30.’
        • ‘My colleague and two people at the next table bought one each so were able to knock the price down a little bit.’
        • ‘We frequently see cases whereby no bidders emerge, even when the price is knocked down to the reserve.’
        • ‘When the salesman found out I was military, he started knocking the price down.’
        • ‘Depreciation should have knocked the price down to just about zero.’
        • ‘Shipments of PalmSource-based devices dropped 13.3 per cent, knocking its share down from 22.5 per cent to 9.5 per cent.’
        • ‘Then he knocked the figure down by 30%. ‘I think a lot of my peers earn too much,’ he says.’
        • ‘On Apr. 14, IBM shocked the market by announcing disappointing earnings, which knocked its stock down 6%.’
    • 4knock something down, knock down somethingUS informal Earn a specified sum as a wage.

      • ‘she was knocking down $100,000 a year as an assistant trader’
    knock off
    • 1 informal Stop work.

      • ‘they usually knock off at 5pm’
      • ‘The typical Australian working day starts in the sunshine at 8am, and shortly after everyone knocks off at 4pm, the parks will be full of men chucking a ball about until the sun goes down.’
      • ‘They worked on the project three or four afternoons a week, knocking off around five to drink beer and talk.’
      • ‘Why can't they have patrols instead of knocking off from work early in the day.’
      • ‘After a frantic week at work I am planning on knocking off a little early today.’
      • ‘I think I'll knock off for the day and have a nice cup of coffee.’
    • 2knock something off, knock off something informal Produce a piece of work quickly and easily, especially to order.

      • ‘I could knock the article off in half an hour’
      • ‘The boys amble about swapping melodies whilst knocking off a string of sunshine West Coast pop hits with unerring ease.’
      • ‘I've been up for an hour or so knocking off a couple of pieces two whole days before the deadline.’
    • 3knock something off, knock off something informal Deduct an amount from a total.

      • ‘when the bill came, they knocked off $600 because of a little scratch’
      • ‘The food was bad, though, and we sent it back and they knocked the charge off our bill.’
      • ‘The very least they could do is knock a few pounds off our electricity bills, just as a gesture of good faith.’
      • ‘A slightly more restrictive exhaust system knocks 5 hp off the engine's 220 hp output.’
      • ‘The government is now trying to persuade its largest creditors to knock some $4 billion off that figure.’
      • ‘And don't forget to mention that immobilizer and alarm - they could each knock 10% off your quote.’
      • ‘Most economists' models are built on what happened in the '70s, and they tell us basically that each $US 10 rise in the oil price knocks about 0.5 per cent off economic growth.’
      • ‘Economists have calculated that a $10 a barrel rise in oil prices knocks about 0.5 percentage points off world growth after 12 to 18 months.’
      • ‘Opting for third-party insurance consistently knocks about a third off the cost of your premium.’
      • ‘Turn down your central heating: a one-degree adjustment on your thermostat could knock hundreds of pounds off your fuel bill.’
      • ‘The argument is that it will save the consumers on the their weekly shopping bill, knocking about 500 off the total annual grocery bill.’
    • 4knock something off, knock off somethingBritish informal Steal something.

      • ‘he got done for knocking off cars’
      • ‘She'd heard about all the trouble we'd been having with vandals and thieves knocking our gear off, so she said she would feel safer if the posters were inside.’
      1. 4.1North American informal Rob a shop or similar establishment.
        • ‘an unidentified robber knocked off the bank’
      2. 4.2 informal Make an illegal copy of a product.
        • ‘they were knocking off fake watches for years before others got into that game’
        • ‘Oh, well, they'll probably sell a load of them at that price before some knocks it off for $5.’
    • 5knock someone off, knock off someone informal Kill someone.

      • ‘he's on a mission to knock off a drug baron’
      • ‘In fact, I strongly suspect he's concocting a game of his own which involves knocking off family members one by one.’
      • ‘In that film, McCormack is a devilish child who begins knocking off fellow classmates and even the family gardener when they dare to get in her way.’
      • ‘They started robbing graves but found the demand for bodies outstripped supply so they started knocking off Edinburgh lowlifes who they reasoned would not be missed.’
      • ‘The plot has a vengeful wife determined to knock off her philandering husband…, but the fellow proves strangely indestructible.’
    • 6knock someone off, knock off someoneBritish vulgar slang Have sex with a woman.

    knock out
    • 1knock someone out, knock out someoneMake a person unconscious, typically with a blow to the head.

      • ‘my head hit the bottom and I was knocked out for a good five minutes’
      1. 1.1Knock down a boxer for a count of ten, thereby winning the contest.
        • ‘I knocked him out in the last round to win the title’
      2. 1.2knock oneself out, knock out oneself informal Work so hard that one is exhausted.
        • ‘I should be knocking myself out trying to get in touch with Beatrice again’
      3. 1.3 informal Astonish or greatly impress someone.
        • ‘I was knocked out by his ability’
    • 2knock someone out, knock out someoneDefeat a competitor in a knockout competition.

      • ‘England had been knocked out of the World Cup’
    • 3knock something out, knock out somethingDestroy, damage, or disable a machine or piece of equipment.

      ‘the fault disabled two backup systems and knocked out the computer’
      • ‘Water and sewage lines were heavily damaged and electricity in the area was knocked out after the main transformer was hit.’
      • ‘In 1989 a solar flare that hit the Earth directly actually knocked out a whole power grid in Quebec.’
      • ‘Tragically, the hit knocked out power and radio contact with the three escort ships.’
      • ‘On Prince Edward Island, the storm knocked out power and sank boats at the Charlottetown yacht club.’
      • ‘The earthquake also knocked out power lines on the island.’
      • ‘The guerrillas sabotaged a dam producing a third of the country's electricity, knocking out power in the nation's capital.’
      • ‘The explosion damaged the right engine and flight controls, knocking out both hydraulic systems.’
      • ‘The explosion had knocked out his ship's engines and sent him on an uncontrollable spin.’
      • ‘A bolt of lightning hit the plane, knocking out the engine.’
      • ‘Lightning caused chaos in York today, striking two houses and knocking out rail signalling equipment to bring trains to a halt.’
      • ‘Telephone services have been knocked out in several parts of the capital.’
    • 4knock something out, knock out something informal Produce work at a steady fast rate.

      • ‘if you knock out a thousand words a day you'll soon have finished’
      • ‘They became the country version of The Rat Pack, getting into trouble together and knocking out hit after hit.’
      • ‘It was taking me about 3-4 weeks a month to write each script, and she told me how very foolish this was, when I could have knocked them out and been making real money.’
      • ‘They have been knocking out folk classics since 1975 and have performed in a variety of clubs across the county.’
    • 5knock something out, knock out somethingEmpty a tobacco pipe by tapping it against a surface.

      • ‘he sighed, knocked out his pipe, and put it back in his pocket’
    knock over
    • 1knock someone over, knock over someonemainly British (especially of a vehicle) strike or collide with someone so as to cause them to fall to the ground.

      • ‘a boy on a bike knocked him over and broke his glasses’
    • 2knock something over, knock over somethingNorth American informal Rob a store or similar establishment.

      • ‘they knocked over a liquor store’
      • ‘First they're nicking comic books, then knocking off whole banks!’
      • ‘If their children develop behavioral disorders at school, drop out, turn to drugs and begin knocking off 7-Elevens—they won't be surprised.’
    knock together
    • knock something together, knock together somethingAssemble something in a hasty and makeshift way.

      ‘he must have knocked the furniture together himself.’
      • ‘I knocked a nice dinner together - thick-cut ham, bubble & squeak, tomato salad and baked beans, followed by a pot of black cherry yoghurt - and enjoyed it greatly.’
      • ‘He's knocking some tracks together and trying to get an album together at the moment.’
      • ‘First-aid and tool kits were knocked together from bits and pieces, and numerous repairs and modifications made the boat safer and diving from her easier.’
      • ‘He responded that as the questions were largely what might pop into the head of whoever knocked the survey together, one should perhaps not read too much into them.’
      • ‘You can't just knock these things together in a couple of hours.’
      • ‘Well, they did manage to knock together a business plan and get a grant from Inverness Enterprise.’
      • ‘It would take him no time at all to knock together a chicken coop and it's not like they don't have enough room for it.’
      • ‘I've knocked together a little Perl script.’
      • ‘One evening we arrived at his home and found his wife had not returned from a meeting so I knocked together a salad for us from the contents of their fridge.’
      • ‘He picks up a 3 - D model which looks like something a Blue Peter presenter might have knocked together out of chicken wire, and peers at me through it.’
    knock up
    • 1knock something up, knock up somethingBritish Make something in a hurry.

      • ‘I knocked up some pasta and a beef casserole’
    • 2knock someone up, knock up someone informal Make a woman pregnant.

      • ‘he knocked her up and left her’
    • 3knock someone up, knock up someoneBritish Wake or attract the attention of someone by knocking at their door.

      • ‘if you are sick during the night, you cannot knock your neighbour up at 2 a.m.’
    • 4British informal (in tennis or a similar game) practise before formal play begins.


Old English cnocian, of imitative origin.