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[kroch-it] /ˈkrɒtʃ ɪt/
an odd fancy or whimsical notion.
a small hook.
a hooklike device or part.
Entomology. a small, hooklike process.
Music. Chiefly British. a quarter note.
a curved surgical instrument with a sharp hook.
Origin of crotchet
1350-1400; Middle English crochet hook, staff with hook at end < Middle French (see crochet); doublet of crocket
1. caprice, whimsy, eccentricity, quirk, oddity. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for crotchet
Historical Examples
  • When the ladies had withdrawn, young crotchet addressed the company.

    Crotchet Castle Thomas Love Peacock
  • Mr. crotchet told the Reverend Doctor Folliott the news of the morning.

    Crotchet Castle Thomas Love Peacock
  • From this eventful night, young crotchet was seen no more on English mould.

    Crotchet Castle Thomas Love Peacock
  • Humor my crotchet just now, and perhaps I may humor yours a month or two hence.

  • Here you have just that kind of crotchet that I am going to deal with.

    Mike Marble Uncle Frank
  • Each of us has his own crotchet, which differs from the other man's.

    The Parisians, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • Now and then the crotchet of a Colonel does a vast deal of mischief.

  • Come, come, Mr. crotchet, dont insult a man in his own room.

    A Tender Attachment

    George Melville Baker
  • To retain rhythmic integrity, this has been edited to read as a crotchet.

    Advice to Singers

    Frederick James Crowest
  • The first note of the measure, which was a minim, has been changed to a crotchet.

    Advice to Singers

    Frederick James Crowest
British Dictionary definitions for crotchet


(music) a note having the time value of a quarter of a semibreve Usual US and Canadian name quarter note
a small hook or hooklike device
a perverse notion
(zoology) a small notched or hooked process, as in an insect
Word Origin
C14: from Old French crochet, literally: little hook, from croche hook; see crocket
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for crotchet

late 14c., "crocket," later "small hook" (early 15c.), from Old French crochet (pronounced "crotchet") "hook" (see crochet). As a surgical instrument, from 1750. Figurative use in musical notation is from mid-15c., from the shape of the notes. Meaning "whimsical fancy" is from 1570s; perhaps from the same mechanical image in crank; but other authorities link this sense to the musical notation one.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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