- a sharp, hard, nonresonant sound, like that produced by two pieces of metal striking, one against the other: the clank of chains; the clank of an iron gate slamming shut.
- to make such a sound.
- to move with such sounds: The old jalopy clanked up the hill.
- to cause to make a sharp sound, as metal in collision: He clanked the shovel against the pail.
- to place, put, set, etc., with a clank: to clank the cell door shut.
Origin of clank
First recorded in 1605–15, clank is from the Dutch word klank sound
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for clank
Soon the only sounds were the clank of a shovel and thuds of dirt being moved.Uncovering Jamaica’s Jewish Past
Debra A. Klein
December 1, 2013
There was trouble in that place—moaning, splashing, gurgling, and the clank of machinery.American Notes
The clank of the iron chain in the gear told that the cage in the shaft was working.A Son of Hagar
Sir Hall Caine
Behind them now came the clank and thud of a score of overtaking feet.The Historical Nights' Entertainment
Voices and the clank of chains were heard in the patio, and then in the next room.
The shuffling movement and clank of chains was heard, but she did not turn her head.
- an abrupt harsh metallic sound
- to make or cause to make such a sound
- (intr) to move or operate making such a sound
C17: of imitative origin
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 clank
1650s, from clank (v.). Reduplicated form clankety-clank attested from 1895.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper