• synonyms


[hawnch, hahnch]
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  1. the hip.
  2. the fleshy part of the body about the hip.
  3. a hindquarter of an animal.
  4. the leg and loin of an animal, used for food.
  5. Architecture.
    1. either side of an arch, extending from the vertex or crown to the impost.
    2. the part of a beam projecting below a floor or roof slab.
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Origin of haunch

1150–1200; Middle English haunche < Old French hanche < Germanic; compare Middle Dutch hanke haunch, hip, German Hanke haunch
Related formshaunched, adjectivehaunch·less, adjective
Can be confusedhaunch hunch
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

hip, buttocks, thigh, leg, posterior, rump, loin

Examples from the Web for haunch

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

British Dictionary definitions for haunch


  1. the human hip or fleshy hindquarter of an animal, esp a horse or similar quadruped
  2. the leg and loin of an animal, used for fooda haunch of venison
  3. Also called: hance architect the part of an arch between the impost and the apex
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Derived Formshaunched, adjective

Word Origin

C13: from Old French hanche; related to Spanish, Italian anca, of Germanic origin; compare Low German hanke
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 haunch


early 13c., from Old French hanche (12c.) "hip, thigh; haunch," from a Germanic source, perhaps Frankish *hanka (cf. Old High German hinkan "to limp," ancha "leg," literally "joint;" Middle Dutch hanke "haunch"). "It is only since the 18th c. that the spelling haunch has displaced hanch" [OED]. Related: Haunches.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper