AskDefine | Define hawk

Dictionary Definition



1 diurnal bird of prey typically having short rounded wings and a long tail
2 an advocate of an aggressive policy on foreign relations [syn: war hawk] [ant: dove]
3 a square board with a handle underneath; used by masons to hold or carry mortar [syn: mortarboard]


1 sell or offer for sale from place to place [syn: peddle, monger, huckster, vend, pitch]
2 hunt with hawks; "the Arabs like to hawk in the desert"
3 clear mucus or food from one's throat; "he cleared his throat before he started to speak" [syn: clear the throat]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • , /hɔːk/, /hO:k/
  • Rhymes with: -ɔːk

Etymology 1



  1. A diurnal predatory bird of the family Accipitridae.
    It is illegal to hunt hawks or other raptors in many parts of the world.
  2. An advocate of aggressive political positions.
    The hawks controlled the senate, so the Minister of War had few problems with his budget.
Related terms
predatory bird
  • Bosnian: jastreb
  • Croatian: jastreb
  • Czech: jestřáb
  • Dutch: havik
  • Finnish: haukka
  • French: faucon
  • German: Habicht
  • Greek, Modern: γεράκι
  • Hungarian: héja
  • Icelandic: haukur
  • Indonesian: rajawali
  • Italian: falco
  • Japanese: 鷹, タカ
  • Lithuanian: vanagas
  • Macedonian: јастреб
  • Polish: jastrząb
  • Portuguese: gavião
  • Russian: ястреб
  • Scottish Gaelic: clamhan , seabhag
  • Serbian:
    Cyrillic: јастреб
    Roman: jastreb
  • Slovene: jastreb
  • Spanish: halcón
  • Swedish: hök
  • Ukrainian: яструб
  • West Frisian: hauk
advocate of aggressive politics
Translations to be checked


  1. To hunt with a hawk.
to hunt with a hawk

Etymology 2


  1. A plasterer's tool, made of a flat surface with a handle below, used to hold an amount of plaster prior to application to the wall or ceiling being worked on.
Derived terms
plasterer's tool
  • Italian: nettatoia, sparviero, vassoio

Etymology 3

back-form hawker


  1. To sell.
    The vendors were hawking their wares from little tables lining either side of the market square.
to sell
Derived terms
Related terms

Etymology 4


  1. To forcibly attempt to cough up (phlegm).
    Jim hawked up some spit and spat it on the sidewalk.
  2. To clear the throat loudly.
    Grandpa sat on the front porch, hawking and wheezing, as he packed his pipe with cheap tobacco.
to attempt to cough up, to clear the throat
Derived terms

See also

Extensive Definition

The term hawk can be used in several ways:
The common names of birds in various parts of the world often use hawk in the second sense. For example, the Osprey or "fish hawk"; or, in North America, the various Buteo species (e.g., the Red-tailed Hawk, B. jamaicensis).
In February 2005, Canadian ornithologist Louis Lefebvre announced a method of measuring avian "IQ" in terms of their innovation in feeding habits. Hawks were named among the most intelligent birds based on his scale.
Hawks are widely reputed to have visual acuity several times that of a normal human being. This is due to the many photoreceptors in the retina (up to 1,000,000 per square mm for Buteo, against 200,000 for humans), an exceptional number of nerves connecting these receptors to the brain, and an indented fovea, which magnifies the central portion of the visual field.
hawk in Old English (ca. 450-1100): Hafoc
hawk in Catalan: Falcó
hawk in German: Habicht
hawk in Spanish: Halcón
hawk in Persian: شاهين
hawk in French: Accipiter
hawk in Korean: 수리매
hawk in Ido: Sparviero
hawk in Indonesian: Rajawali
hawk in Inuktitut: ᑭᒡᒐᕕᒃ/kiggavik
hawk in Hungarian: Héjaformák
hawk in Japanese: 鷹
hawk in Dutch: Accipiter
hawk in Polish: Jastrzębie
hawk in Portuguese: Gavião
hawk in Russian: Ястребы
hawk in Serbian: Соко
hawk in Swedish: Hökar
hawk in Vietnamese: Diều hâu

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Argus, beat, cat, chase, chauvinist, course, dispense, dog, dribble, drive, drivel, drool, eagle, expectorate, falcon, ferret, flush, follow the hounds, fowl, go hunting, gun, hound, huckster, hunt, hunt down, jack, jacklight, jingo, jingoist, lynx, militarist, monger, peddle, prowl after, ride to hounds, run, salivate, shikar, shoot, slabber, slaver, slobber, spew, spit, sport, stalk, start, still-hunt, track, trail, vend, war dog, war hawk, warmonger, weasel
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