Definitions

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

  • n. Either of two bony or cartilaginous structures that in most vertebrates form the framework of the mouth and hold the teeth.
  • n. The mandible or maxilla or the part of the face covering these bones.
  • n. Any of various structures of invertebrates that have an analogous function to vertebrate jaws.
  • n. Either of two opposed hinged parts in a mechanical device.
  • n. The walls of a pass, canyon, or cavern.
  • n. A dangerous situation or confrontation: the jaws of death.
  • n. Slang Impudent argument or back talk: Don't give me any jaw.
  • n. Slang A conversation or chat.
  • intransitive v. Slang To talk vociferously; jabber.
  • intransitive v. Slang To talk; converse.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. One of the bones, usually bearing teeth, which form the framework of the mouth.
  • n. The part of the face below the mouth.
  • n. Anything resembling the jaw of an animal in form or action; especially plural, the mouth or way of entrance.
  • n. A notch or opening.
  • n. A notched or forked part, adapted for holding an object in place.
  • n. One of a pair of opposing parts which are movable towards or from each other, for grasping or crushing anything between them.
  • n. The inner end of a boom or gaff, hollowed in a half circle so as to move freely on a mast.
  • n. Impudent or abusive talk.
  • n. Axle guard.
  • v. To assail or abuse by scolding.
  • v. To scold; to clamor.
  • v. To talk; to converse.
  • v. (of a ball) To stick in the jaws of a pocket.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n.
  • n. One of the bones, usually bearing teeth, which form the framework of the mouth.
  • n. Hence, also, the bone itself with the teeth and covering.
  • n. In the plural, the mouth.
  • n. Fig.: Anything resembling the jaw of an animal in form or action; esp., pl., the mouth or way of entrance.
  • n.
  • n. A notch or opening.
  • n. A notched or forked part, adapted for holding an object in place. See Axle guard.
  • n. One of a pair of opposing parts which are movable towards or from each other, for grasping or crushing anything between them, .
  • n. The inner end of a boom or gaff, hollowed in a half circle so as to move freely on a mast.
  • n. Impudent or abusive talk.
  • intransitive v. To scold; to clamor.
  • intransitive v. To talk idly, long-windedly, or without special purpose.
  • transitive v. To assail or abuse by scolding.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To talk or gossip; also, to scold; clamor.
  • To seize with the jaws; bite; devour.
  • To abuse by scolding; use impertinent or Impudent language toward.
  • To pour out; throw or dash out rapidly, and in considerable quantity, as a liquid; splash; dash.
  • To splash; dash, as a wave.
  • n. One of the bones which form the skeleton or framework of the mouth; a maxilla or mandible; these bones collectively.
  • n. The bones and associated structures of the mouth, as the teeth and soft parts, taken together as instruments of prehension and mastication; mouth-parts in general: commonly in the plural.
  • n. Something resembling in position or use, in grasping or biting, the jaw or jaws of an animal.
  • n. [⟨ jaw, verb] Rude loquacity; coarse railing; abusive clamor; wrangling.
  • n. A considerable quantity of any liquid; a wave.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the part of the skull of a vertebrate that frames the mouth and holds the teeth
  • v. talk incessantly and tiresomely
  • n. the bones of the skull that frame the mouth and serve to open it; the bones that hold the teeth
  • n. holding device consisting of one or both of the opposing parts of a tool that close to hold an object
  • v. chew (food); to bite and grind with the teeth
  • v. censure severely or angrily
  • v. talk socially without exchanging too much information

Etymologies

Middle English jawe, jowe, perhaps from Old French joue, cheek.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English jawe, jowe, geowe, alteration of *chawe (in early Modern English chawe, chaw), from Proto-Germanic *kawōn (compare Middle Dutch kauwe ("fish jaw"), kouwe ("mouth cavity"), dialectal German Käu, Keu ("jaw, donkey jowl")), gradation-variant of *kewōn (compare Old English cīan (pl.) ‘gills’, West Frisian kiuw ‘gill’, Dutch kieuw ‘gill’), noun from Proto-Germanic *kewwanan (compare English chew). More at chew. Alteration probably influenced by Middle English jolle, chaul ("jowl"), which it replaced (see jowl). (Wiktionary)

Examples

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • "Rowland doesn't half love jawing"

    -Anthony Powell, Valley of Bones

    May 12, 2009

  • "And then come back here, and this afternoon we'll have a good old-fashioned jaw."

    - Harold Frederic, The Damnation of Theron Ware, ch. 16

    August 2, 2008