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[fuhngkt] /fʌŋkt/
adjective, Southern U.S. (chiefly Kentucky) . (of tobacco)
rotten; moldy.
Origin of funked
1890-95; funk punk (noun) (Middle English fonk; cognate with Dutch vonk, German Funke) + -ed3


[fuhngk] /fʌŋk/
cowering fear; state of great fright or terror.
a dejected mood:
He's been in a funk ever since she walked out on him.
verb (used with object)
to be afraid of.
to frighten.
to shrink from; try to shirk.
verb (used without object)
to shrink or quail in fear.
1735-45; perhaps < early Dutch dialect fonck
Related forms
funker, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for funked
Historical Examples
  • At the eviction a man had funked, frightened out of his seven senses.

    Ireland as It Is Robert John Buckley (AKA R.J.B.)
  • Some of my green men had funked just at the crucial moment, and I had all but shot one.

    Four Days

    Hetty Hemenway
  • "No, I had a chance and I—funked it," said Harry, slow in speech and slow in smile.

    Tristram of Blent Anthony Hope
  • You oughtn't to have funked telling your mother what you meant to do.

    Fraternity John Galsworthy
  • But Sturton knew, the delicate Bagshaw also, that Rawlings had funked.

    King of Ranleigh

    F. S. (Frederick Sadlier) Brereton
  • Discipline, and the knowledge that if I funked, my name would stick in the mud for ever.

    John Brown Captain R. W. Campbell
  • Old Erradeen had not a bad spirit of his own, and he funked it.

    The Wizard's Son, Vol. 1(of 3) Margaret Oliphant
  • After this rebuff the Jews funked; their hearts "melted and became as water."

    Bible Romances George W. Foote
  • Now it was Albert's turn to go in and dig, but he funked it.

  • I simply had to hunt and shoot the beast, or let the people think I funked it.

    Banked Fires

    E. W. (Ethel Winifred) Savi
British Dictionary definitions for funked


Also called blue funk. a state of nervousness, fear, or depression (esp in the phrase in a funk)
a coward
to flinch from (responsibility) through fear
(transitive; usually passive) to make afraid
Derived Forms
funker, noun
Word Origin
C18: university slang, perhaps related to funk²


(US, slang) a strong foul odour
Word Origin
C17 (in the sense: tobacco smoke): from funk (vb) to smoke (tobacco), probably of French dialect origin; compare Old French funkier to smoke, from Latin fūmigāre


(informal) a type of polyrhythmic Black dance music with heavy syncopation
Word Origin
C20: back formation from funky1


Casimir (ˈkæzɪˌmɪə). 1884–1967, US biochemist, born in Poland: studied and named vitamins
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 funked



"depression, ill-humor," 1743, probably originally Scottish and northern English; earlier as a verb, "panic, fail through panic," (1737), said to be 17c. Oxford University slang, perhaps from Flemish fonck "perturbation, agitation, distress," possibly related to Old French funicle "wild, mad."



"bad smell," 1620s, from dialectal French funkière "smoke," from Old French fungier "give off smoke; fill with smoke," from Latin fumigare "to smoke" (see fume (n.)). In reference to a style of music, it is first attested 1959, a back-formation from funky.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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funked in Medicine

Funk (fŭngk, fōōngk), Casimir. 1884-1967.

Polish-born American biochemist whose research of deficiency diseases led to the discovery of vitamins, which he named in 1912.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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funked in Science
  (fŭngk, fngk)   
Polish-born American biochemist who is credited with the discovery of vitamins. In 1912 he postulated the existence of four organic bases he called vitamines which were necessary for normal health and the prevention of deficiency diseases. He also contributed to the knowledge of the hormones of the pituitary gland and the sex glands.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for funked

funk 1


Depression; moroseness; the BLUES: This levelheaded man of logic, however, is also a creature of moods and funks/ You guys are in a funk (1743+)


To fail through panic; be frightened to immobility •Chiefly British: She would have won, but suddenly funked (1737+)

Related Terms

blue funk, in a funk

[perhaps fr Flemish fonck, ''perturbation'']

funk 2


A style of urban lack musi that relies heavily on bass guitar and exhibits elements like African rhythms, the blues, early rock and roll, jazz, etc: There is no denying the influence of Instant Funk/ the Minister of Super Heavy Funk, the legendary James Brown/ He is New Orleans ''fonk''


To play or move to an urban lack musi that features a dominant bass guitar: I think it's all right to funk all night

[1950s+ Musicians; fr funky]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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