hack

To hack is to cut or chop something with short strong blows, like if you hack your way through a thick jungle with a machete. To hack is also to illegally break into someone’s computer.

The Old English root word is haccian, which means “to cut into pieces,” but hack also means to cough frequently. A tickle in your throat can make you hack. If you call someone a hack, you mean they’re not great at what they do — especially writing. A mediocre writer is called a hack. Once upon a time hack was short for “an ordinary horse,” and now it’s an insult for writers. No one wants to be a hack!

Definitions of hack
  1. verb
    cut away
    “he hacked his way through the forest”
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    type of:
    cut
    separate with or as if with an instrument
  2. verb
    cut with a hacking tool
    synonyms: chop
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    types:
    ax, axe
    chop or split with an ax
    type of:
    cut
    separate with or as if with an instrument
  3. noun
    a tool (as a hoe or pick or mattock) used for breaking up the surface of the soil
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    type of:
    tool
    an implement used in the practice of a vocation
  4. verb
    fix a computer program piecemeal until it works
    “I'm not very good at hacking but I'll give it my best”
    synonyms: hack on
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    type of:
    program, programme
    write a computer program
  5. verb
    significantly cut up a manuscript
    synonyms: cut up
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    type of:
    edit, redact
    prepare for publication or presentation by correcting, revising, or adapting
  6. verb
    cough spasmodically
    “The patient with emphysema is hacking all day”
    synonyms: whoop
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    type of:
    cough
    exhale abruptly, as when one has a chest cold or congestion
  7. verb
    be able to manage or manage successfully
    “I can't hack it anymore”
    synonyms: cut
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    type of:
    contend, cope, deal, get by, grapple, make do, make out, manage
    come to terms with
  8. verb
    kick on the shins
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    type of:
    foul
    commit a foul; break the rules
  9. verb
    kick on the arms
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    type of:
    foul
    commit a foul; break the rules
  10. noun
    one who works hard at boring tasks
    synonyms: drudge, hacker
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    types:
    plodder, slogger
    someone who works slowly and monotonously for long hours
    type of:
    unskilled person
    a person who lacks technical training
  11. noun
    a politician who belongs to a small clique that controls a political party for private rather than public ends
    synonyms: machine politician, political hack, ward-heeler
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    type of:
    pol, political leader, politician, politico
    a person active in party politics
  12. noun
    a mediocre and disdained writer
    synonyms: hack writer, literary hack
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    type of:
    author, writer
    writes (books or stories or articles or the like) professionally (for pay)
  13. noun
    a car driven by a person whose job is to take passengers where they want to go in exchange for money
    synonyms: cab, taxi, taxicab
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    types:
    gypsy cab
    a taxicab that cruises for customers although it is licensed only to respond to calls
    minicab
    a minicar used as a taxicab
    type of:
    auto, automobile, car, machine, motorcar
    a motor vehicle with four wheels; usually propelled by an internal combustion engine
  14. noun
    a horse kept for hire
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    type of:
    Equus caballus, horse
    solid-hoofed herbivorous quadruped domesticated since prehistoric times
  15. noun
    a saddle horse used for transportation rather than sport etc.
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    type of:
    mount, riding horse, saddle horse
    a lightweight horse kept for riding only
  16. noun
    an old or over-worked horse
    synonyms: jade, nag, plug
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    type of:
    Equus caballus, horse
    solid-hoofed herbivorous quadruped domesticated since prehistoric times
Word Family