from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To interfere with the respiration of by compression or obstruction of the larynx or trachea.
  • intransitive verb To check or slow down the movement, growth, or action of.
  • intransitive verb To block up or obstruct by filling or clogging.
  • intransitive verb To fill up completely; jam.
  • intransitive verb To reduce the air intake of (a carburetor), thereby enriching the fuel mixture.
  • intransitive verb Sports To grip (a bat or racket, for example) at a point nearer the hitting surface.
  • intransitive verb To have difficulty in breathing, swallowing, or speaking.
  • intransitive verb To become blocked up or obstructed.
  • intransitive verb Sports To shorten one's grip on the handle of a bat or racket. Often used with up.
  • intransitive verb To fail to perform effectively because of nervous agitation or tension, especially in an athletic contest.
  • noun The act or sound of choking.
  • noun Something that constricts or chokes.
  • noun A slight narrowing of the barrel of a shotgun serving to concentrate the shot.
  • noun A device used in an internal-combustion engine to enrich the fuel mixture by reducing the flow of air to the carburetor.
  • noun The fibrous inedible center of an artichoke head.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To stop or cease working: said of electrical apparatus.
  • To stop the breath of by preventing access of air to the windpipe; suffocate; stifle.
  • Specifically To deprive of the power of breathing, either temporarily or permanently, by stricture of or obstruction in the windpipe; constrict or stop up the windpipe of so as to hinder or prevent breathing; strangle.
  • To stop by filling; obstruct; block up: often with up: as, to choke up the entrance of a harbor or any passage.
  • To hinder by obstruction or impediments; overpower, hinder, or check the growth, expansion, or progress of; stifle; smother.
  • To suppress or stifle.
  • To offend greatly; revolt.
  • Same as choke-bore.
  • To stifle or suffocate, as by obstruction and pressure in hastily swallowing food, or by irritation of the air-passages when fluids are accidentally admitted there.
  • To be checked as if by choking; stick.
  • noun In India, an open place or wide street, in the middle of a city, where the market is held.
  • noun plural Tonsillitis.
  • noun The constriction of the bore of a choke-bored gun.—
  • noun The neck or portion of a rocket where the stick is attached.—
  • noun The tie at the end of a cartridge.
  • noun The filamentous or capillary part of the artichoke.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To render unable to breathe by filling, pressing upon, or squeezing the windpipe; to stifle; to suffocate; to strangle.
  • transitive verb To obstruct by filling up or clogging any passage; to block up.
  • transitive verb To hinder or check, as growth, expansion, progress, etc.; to stifle.
  • transitive verb To affect with a sense of strangulation by passion or strong feeling.
  • transitive verb To make a choke, as in a cartridge, or in the bore of the barrel of a shotgun.
  • transitive verb to stop a person in the execution of a purpose; as, to choke off a speaker by uproar.
  • intransitive verb To have the windpipe stopped; to have a spasm of the throat, caused by stoppage or irritation of the windpipe; to be strangled.
  • intransitive verb To be checked, as if by choking; to stick.
  • noun A stoppage or irritation of the windpipe, producing the feeling of strangulation.
  • noun The tied end of a cartridge.
  • noun A constriction in the bore of a shotgun, case of a rocket, etc.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb intransitive To be unable to breathe because of obstruction of the windpipe, for instance food or other objects that go down the wrong way.
  • verb transitive To prevent someone from breathing by strangling them.


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English choken, short for achoken, from Old English āceōcian : ā-, intensive pref. + cēoce, cēace, jaw, cheek.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English choken (also cheken), from Old English *ċēocian, āċēocian ("to choke"), probably derived from Old English ċēoce, ċēace ("jaw, cheek"), see cheek. Cognate with Icelandic kok ("throat"), koka ("to gulp"). See also achoke.


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