Definitions

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

  • adjective Informal Exceptional of its kind; remarkable.
  • adjective Swift and vigorous.
  • adjective Brisk and fresh.
  • adverb Used as an intensive.
  • noun A number of slaps on the buttocks delivered in rapid succession, as for punishment.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The act of striking with the open hand, or with something flat: a punishment often administered to children.
  • Moving with a quick, lively pace; dashing; free-going.
  • Strikingly large, or surprising in any way; going beyond expectation; stunning; whopping. W. Collins, After Dark, Stolen Letter.

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

  • adjective Moving with a quick, lively pace, or capable of so doing; dashing.
  • adjective colloq. Large; considerable.
  • adjective informal Very; extremely; -- used especially in the phrase spanking new or brand spanking new, meaning completely new and unused.

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

  • verb Present participle of spank.
  • noun A form of physical punishment in which a beating is applied to the buttocks.
  • noun An incident of such punishment, or such physical act in a non-punitive context, such as a birthday spanking.
  • adjective Fast and energetic.
  • adjective Brisk and fresh.
  • adjective remarkable of its kind.
  • adverb colloquial, now usually with “new” An intensifier.

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

  • noun the act of slapping on the buttocks
  • adjective quick and energetic

Etymologies

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

[Perhaps of Scandinavian origin.]

Examples

  • I hate to use the word spanking around college kids, because it just gives them ideas.

    News - latimes.com

  • Not because I think that spanking and spankers are in all circumstances evil and terrible – my own parents were spankers – but because I think that although spanking is not always or necessarily abusive, it tilts too obviously and too dangerously in that direction and anything that encourages the practice just might, you know, grease the slope.

    A Spanking A Day Keeps Failure Away? | Her Bad Mother

  • And, to tell you the truth, I think the “cold, calculated, warning” version of spanking is worst sometimes than the one that comes out of pure anger.

    Sticks And Stones | Her Bad Mother

  • The thing that really gets me with spanking is … if you saw a parent slap a kid across the face, would you think that was abusive?

    Sticks And Stones | Her Bad Mother

  • And, when he pulls my hair in anger or kicks me, spanking is my first instinct.

    Sticks And Stones | Her Bad Mother

  • Neither my husband (who was always spanked) nor I (almost never spanked) “believe” in spanking as a disciplinary tactic.

    A Spanking A Day Keeps Failure Away? | Her Bad Mother

  • I wonder if spanking is a particularly British predilection?

    Tart Cards

  • The first group, wont to judge the parents who believe an occasional, mild, judicious spanking is proper — or the second group, who harshly condemns the parents who truly abuse their child, even to the point ofdeath?

    The Volokh Conspiracy » The Rhetoric of Opposition

  • I tried to find the actual study with no luck (I only spent a couple of minutes looking for it); however, even the article you linked to has a quote from the doctor who completed the study where she clearly states spanking is a big gun for a big job (to paraphrase).

    A Spanking A Day Keeps Failure Away? | Her Bad Mother

  • Do you believe in spanking or any other form of corporal punishment?

    Doug Peine - An interview with author

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