hatchet

[ hach-it ]
/ ˈhætʃ ɪt /

noun

a small, short-handled ax having the end of the head opposite the blade in the form of a hammer, made to be used with one hand.
a tomahawk.

verb (used with object)

to cut, destroy, kill, etc., with a hatchet.
to abridge, delete, excise, etc.: The network censor may hatchet 30 minutes from the script.

Nearby words

  1. hatch boat,
  2. hatchback,
  3. hatcheck,
  4. hatchel,
  5. hatchery,
  6. hatchet face,
  7. hatchet job,
  8. hatchet man,
  9. hatchetfish,
  10. hatchettine

Idioms

    bury the hatchet, to become reconciled or reunited; make peace.
    take up the hatchet, to begin or resume hostilities; prepare for or go to war: The natives are taking up the hatchet against the enemy.

Origin of hatchet

1300–50; 1670–80, Americanism for def 6; Middle English hachet < Middle French hachette, diminutive (see -et) of hache ax < Frankish *hapja kind of knife; akin to Greek kóptein to cut (cf. comma, syncope)

Related formshatch·et·like, adjective

bury

[ ber-ee ]
/ ˈbɛr i /

verb (used with object), bur·ied, bur·y·ing.

noun, plural bur·ies.

Origin of bury

before 1000; Middle English berien, buryen, Old English byrgan to bury, conceal; akin to Old English beorgan to hide, protect, preserve; cognate with Dutch, German bergen, Gothic bairgan, Old Norse bjarga

Related formshalf-bur·ied, adjectivere·bur·y, verb (used with object), re·bur·ied, re·bur·y·ing.un·bur·ied, adjectivewell-bur·ied, adjective

Can be confusedBarry berry bury

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


British Dictionary definitions for bury the hatchet

Bury

/ (ˈbɛrɪ) /

noun

a town in NW England, in Bury unitary authority, Greater Manchester: an early textile centre. Pop: 60 178 (2001)
a unitary authority in NW England, in Greater Manchester. Pop: 181 900 (2003 est). Area: 99 sq km (38 sq miles)

bury

/ (ˈbɛrɪ) /

verb buries, burying or buried (tr)

Word Origin for bury

Old English byrgan to bury, hide; related to Old Norse bjarga to save, preserve, Old English beorgan to defend

hatchet

/ (ˈhætʃɪt) /

noun

a short axe used for chopping wood, etc
a tomahawk
(modifier) of narrow dimensions and sharp featuresa hatchet face
bury the hatchet to cease hostilities and become reconciled
Derived Formshatchet-like, adjective

Word Origin for hatchet

C14: from Old French hachette, from hache axe, of Germanic origin; compare Old High German happa knife

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 bury the hatchet
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for bury the hatchet

bury the hatchet

To agree to end a quarrel: “Jerry and Cindy had been avoiding each other since the divorce, but I saw them together this morning, so they must have buried the hatchet.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with bury the hatchet

bury the hatchet

Make peace; settle one's differences. For example, Toward the end of the year, the roommates finally decided to bury the hatchet. Although some believe this term comes from a Native American custom for declaring peace between warring tribes, others say it comes from hang up one's hatchet, a term dating from the early 1300s (well before Columbus landed in the New World). The word bury replaced hang up in the 1700s.

hatchet

In addition to the idioms beginning with hatchet

  • hatchet job
  • hatchet man

also see:

  • bury the hatchet
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.