Other forms: hunkered; hunkers; hunkering

To hunker is to crouch: to bend your body into a low, small shape. When you're playing hide and seek, you may decide to hunker in the back of a closet until you're found.

You hunker physically when you're hiding or making space for other people or squatting to talk to a small child. You can also hunker figuratively, like when you hunker down in your house during a snowstorm, waiting to venture out until the roads have been plowed. Another way to hunker down is to focus on a task and work extra hard. We know hunker is a Scottish word, but beyond that its origins aren't clear.

Definitions of hunker
  1. verb
    sit on one's heels
    “The children hunkered down to protect themselves from the sandstorm”
    synonyms: crouch, hunker down, scrunch, scrunch up, squat
    see moresee less
    type of:
    sit, sit down
    be seated
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DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘hunker'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
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