- 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 clanking
From morning until night, rush'd down the clanking guillotine.
They had wrapped the links of the chain in grass and leaves, so that no clanking was heard.Welsh Fairy Tales
William Elliott Griffis
A wheezing and coughing and clanking of keys interrupted the proceedings.The Channings
Mrs. Henry Wood
Presently there came the gentlest of impacts and then a clanking sound.Pariah Planet
Philip could hear no more for the puffing of the steam and the clanking of the chains.The Manxman
- 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
Word Origin and History for clanking
1650s, from clank (v.). Reduplicated form clankety-clank attested from 1895.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper