[man-hat-n, or especially for 1, 2, muh n-]


Also called Man·hat·tan Is·land. an island in New York City surrounded by the Hudson, East, and Harlem rivers. 13½ miles (22 km) long; 2½ miles (4 km) greatest width; 22¼ sq. mi. (58 sq. km).
a borough of New York City approximately coextensive with Manhattan Island: chief business district of the city.
a city in NE Kansas, on the Kansas River.
(often lowercase) a cocktail made of whiskey and sweet vermouth, usually with a dash of bitters and a maraschino cherry. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for manhattan

Contemporary Examples of manhattan

Historical Examples of manhattan

  • With the big bag inflated, she floated lazily in the air, about a quarter of a mile from the Manhattan.

  • Seated in a large touring car, he traversed every street of lower Manhattan, carefully scanning the faces of men.

    Dust of New York

    Konrad Bercovici

  • Every eye, ear, radio and television station will be turned towards Manhattan.

  • And at the thought of her husband's tyranny, Mrs. Manhattan shrugged her shoulders and gazed complacently in her lap.


    Edgar Saltus

  • That town was packed snugly into the southern angle of the island of Manhattan, like a gift in the toe of a Christmas stocking.

    The Continental Dragoon

    Robert Neilson Stephens

British Dictionary definitions for manhattan



an island at the N end of New York Bay, between the Hudson, East, and Harlem Rivers: administratively (with adjacent islets) a borough of New York City; a major financial, commercial, and cultural centre. Pop: 1 537 195 (2000). Area: 47 sq km (22 sq miles)
a mixed drink consisting of four parts whisky, one part vermouth, and a dash of bitters
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 manhattan


main island of New York City, from Dutch, from a native name, perhaps representing a Delaware (Algonquian) source akin to Munsee munahan "island." Bright favors Munsee /e:nta menahahte:nk/ "where one gathers bows." As the name of a cocktail made of vermouth, whiskey, and a dash of bitters, it is attested from 1890 (in Manhattan cocktail).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for manhattan


Island that constitutes one of the five boroughs that make up New York City. (See also Bowery, Broadway (see also Broadway), Central Park, Harlem, Park Avenue, Times Square, and World Trade Center.)


Center of the country's financial industry (see Wall Street), communications industry, including advertising and television (see Madison Avenue), and fashion industry (see Fifth Avenue).


A center of the art world (see Greenwich Village).


Because of its noise and congestion, some have viewed it as unlivable, giving rise to the phrase “It's a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there.” In the 1990s, it experienced prosperity and a decline in crime rates.


The September 11 attacks left a physical and emotional scar on Manhattan.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.