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conker

[kong-ker, kawng-]
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noun British Informal.
  1. a horse chestnut.
  2. the hollowed-out shell of a horse chestnut.
  3. conkers, a game in which a child swings a horse chestnut on a string in an attempt to break that of another player.
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Origin of conker

1840–50; probably orig. conquer; compare conquering a game played with snail shells (the name of the game presumably later transferred to the playing pieces)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for conkers

conkers

noun
  1. (functioning as singular) British a game in which a player swings a horse chestnut (conker), threaded onto a string, against that of another player to try to break it
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Word Origin

C19: from dialect conker snail shell, originally used in the game

conker

noun
  1. an informal name for horse chestnut (def. 2)
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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 conkers

n.

"child's game played with horse chestnuts," originally with snail shells, 1847, probably a variant of conquer. The goal was to break the other player's item by hitting it with yours.

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conker

n.

"snail shell," also "horse chestnut," from children's game of conkers (q.v.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper