verb (used without object)

to make a sharp, harsh, grating, or squeaking sound.
to move with creaking.

verb (used with object)

to cause to creak.


a creaking sound.

Origin of creak

1275–1325; Middle English creken to croak, apparently back formation from Old English crǣcettan, variant of crācettan to croak
Related formscreak·ing·ly, adverb
Can be confusedcreak creek croak Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for creaks

squeak, screech, groan, sound, scratch, scrape, rasp, crepitate, squeal, chirr

Examples from the Web for creaks

Contemporary Examples of creaks

Historical Examples of creaks

  • Creaks and cracks and rustlings mysterious and unexplainable.

    Thankful's Inheritance

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • This cottage rattles and creaks, and when the wind blows, it comes in through every chink.


    Johanna Spyri

  • A thing that creaks is not standing still and gathering mildew.

  • It is hanging on the sands—how it creaks and sways in the wind!

    The Light of Scarthey

    Egerton Castle

  • We had heard lots of creaks already, but somehow this one startled us both.

    Reginald Cruden

    Talbot Baines Reed

British Dictionary definitions for creaks



to make or cause to make a harsh squeaking sound
(intr) to make such sounds while movingthe old car creaked along


a harsh squeaking sound
Derived Formscreaky, adjectivecreakily, adverbcreakiness, nouncreakingly, adverb

Word Origin for creak

C14: variant of croak, 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 creaks



early 14c., "utter a harsh cry," of imitative origin. Used of the sound made by a rusty gate hinge, etc., from 1580s. Related: Creaked; creaking. As a noun, from c.1600.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper