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bunk1

[buhngk]
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noun
  1. a built-in platform bed, as on a ship.
  2. Informal. any bed.
  3. a cabin used for sleeping quarters, as in a summer camp; bunkhouse.
  4. a trough for feeding cattle.
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verb (used without object)
  1. Informal. to occupy a bunk or any sleeping quarters: Joe and Bill bunked together at camp.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to provide with a place to sleep.
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Origin of bunk1

First recorded in 1750–60; back formation from bunker

bunk2

[buhngk]
noun Informal.
  1. humbug; nonsense.
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Origin of bunk2

1895–1900, Americanism; short for bunkum

Synonyms

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bunk3

[buhngk]
verb (used with or without object)
  1. to bump.
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Origin of bunk3

perhaps expressive alteration of bump

bunk4

[buhngk]British Slang.
verb (used with object)
  1. to absent oneself from: to bunk a history class.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to run off or away; flee.
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Idioms
  1. do a bunk, to leave hastily, especially under suspicious circumstances; run away.
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Origin of bunk4

First recorded in 1865–70; perhaps special use of bunk1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

rubbish, baloney, cot, pallet, hogwash, garbage, claptrap, tomfoolery, jazz, bilge, hooey, piffle, flimflam, applesauce, poppycock, balderdash, trash, rot, tommyrot, twaddle

Examples from the Web for bunk

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • It was several weeks before I was allowed even to quit my bunk.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • Leonard rubbed the stuff on his side and turned into his bunk.

  • Caradoc lifted his head from the bunk and blinked at the two men in the door.

  • I was shown his bunk below, and there I found I had guessed right.

    The Harbor

    Ernest Poole

  • She don't sail for an hour or two and I'll be asleep in my bunk long before.

    The Harbor

    Ernest Poole


British Dictionary definitions for bunk

bunk1

noun
  1. a narrow shelflike bed fixed along a wall
  2. short for bunk bed
  3. informal any place where one sleeps
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verb
  1. (intr often foll by down) to prepare to sleephe bunked down on the floor
  2. (intr) to occupy a bunk or bed
  3. (tr) to provide with a bunk or bed
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Word Origin

C19: probably short for bunker

bunk2

noun
  1. informal short for bunkum (def. 1)
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bunk3

noun
  1. a hurried departure, usually under suspicious circumstances (esp in the phrase do a bunk)
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verb
  1. (usually foll by off) to play truant from (school, work, etc)
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Word Origin

C19: perhaps from bunk 1 (in the sense: to occupy a bunk, hence a hurried departure, as on a ship)
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

Word Origin and History for bunk

n.1

"sleeping berth," 1758, probably a shortened form of bunker (n.) in its sense "seat." Bunk-bed (n.) attested by 1869.

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n.2

"nonsense," 1900, short for bunkum, phonetic spelling of Buncombe, a county in North Carolina. The usual story (by 1841) of its origin is this: At the close of the protracted Missouri statehood debates, supposedly on Feb. 25, 1820, N.C. Representative Felix Walker (1753-1828) began what promised to be a "long, dull, irrelevant speech," and he resisted calls to cut it short by saying he was bound to say something that could appear in the newspapers in the home district and prove he was on the job. "I shall not be speaking to the House," he confessed, "but to Buncombe." Bunkum has been American English slang for "nonsense" since 1841 (from 1838 as generic for "a U.S. Representative's home district").

MR. WALKER, of North Carolina, rose then to address the Committee on the question [of Missouri statehood]; but the question was called for so clamorously and so perseveringly that Mr. W. could proceed no farther than to move that the committee rise. [Annals of Congress, House of Representatives, 16th Congress, 1st Session, p. 1539]
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v.

"to sleep in a bunk," 1840, originally nautical, from bunk (n.1). Related: Bunked; bunking.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper