AskDefine | Define punk

Dictionary Definition

punk adj : of very poor quality [syn: bum, cheap, cheesy, chintzy, crummy, sleazy, tinny]


1 an aggressive and violent young criminal [syn: hood, hoodlum, goon, thug, tough, toughie, strong-armer]
2 substance that smolders when ignited; used to light fuses (especially fireworks)
3 material for starting a fire [syn: kindling, tinder, touchwood, spunk]
4 a teenager or young adult who is a performer (or enthusiast) of punk rock and a member of the punk youth subculture [syn: punk rocker]
5 rock music with deliberately offensive lyrics expressing anger and social alienation; in part a reaction against progressive rock [syn: punk rock]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. A prostitute.
    • , V.i.
      My lord, she may be a punk; for many of them are neither maid, widow, nor wife.
  2. In the context of "19th century|rare": The bottom in a male-male sexual relationship; a catamite.
    Because he was so weak, Vinny soon became Tony's punk.
  3. In the context of "US|prison|_|slang": A male used for sex by larger or stronger inmates.
    • 1946, Mezz Mezzrow & Bernard Wolfe, Really the Blues, Payback Press 1999, p. 15:
      A punk, if you want it in plain English, is a boy with smooth skin who takes the place of a woman in a jailbird's love life.
  4. A social and musical movement rooted in rebelling against the established order.
  5. The music of the punk movement, known for short songs with electric guitars, strong drums, and a direct, unproduced approach.
  6. A person subscribing to the movement, a punk rocker.
    Usage note: An informal plural used within the punk subculture is punx.
  7. A worthless person.
  8. A juvenile delinquent, young petty criminal or trouble-maker.
  9. A utensil for lighting wicks or fuses (such as those of fireworks) resembling stick incense.
    • 1907, Jack London, The Road,
      On the end a coal of fire slowly smouldered. It would last for hours, and my cell-mate called it a "punk."
    • 1994, Ashland Price, Viking Tempest, p353
      Then, without another word, he rose and left the shelter, apparently in order to light the vessel's wick with a punk from the dying campfire.
    • 2004, Shawn Shiflett, Hidden Place, p221
      He raised the cylinder high in the air with his bare hand, used a punk to light the fuse, and KABOOM!
  10. Various kinds of material used as tinder for lighting fires, such as agaric, dry decayed wood or touchwood.
    • 1899, H. B. Cushman, History of the Choctaw, Chickasaw and Natchez Indians, p271
      On one occasion a venerable old Indian man, who, in order to light his pipe, was trying to catch a spark upon a piece of punk struck from his flint and steel; ...
    • 1922, Harry Ignatius Marshall, The Karen People of Burma, p61
      The oil is mixed with bits of dry wood or punk and moulded into sticks about a cubit long and an inch in diameter by putting it into joints of small bamboo.
    • 2001, William W. Johnstone, War of the Mountain Man, p116
      He made him a little smoldering pocket of punk to light the fuses and waited.


(16th century) A prostitute
The bottom in a male-male sexual relationship
A social and musical movement rooted in rebelling against the established order
The music of the punk movement
  • Croatian: pank
  • Finnish: punk
  • Norwegian: pønk, punk
A person subscribing to the movement, a punk rocker
  • Finnish: punkkari
  • Norwegian: pønker, punker
A worthless person
A juvenile delinquent, young petty criminal or trouble-maker
  • Finnish: pikkurikollinen
A utensil for lighting fireworks resembling stick incense

Usage notes

The most common usage is as in Punk rock, the social and musical movement. In the UK this is possibly the sole usage with occasional quotation from film, TV etc. as in the example given below.


worthless person
  • 1971 - I know what you're thinking, punk. You're thinking, "Did he fire six shots or only five?" Well, to tell you the truth, I've forgotten myself in all this excitement. But being as this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself a question: Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya punk? — Clint Eastword as Harry Callahan in the motion picture Dirty Harry


  1. Of, or resembling the punk subculture
    You look very punk with your t-shirt, piercing and chains.


  1. (17th century) To pimp.
    Tony punked-out Vinny when he was low on smokes.
  2. To forcibly perform anal sex upon an unwilling partner.
    Tony punked all his new cell-mates.
  3. To prank.
    I got expelled when I punked the principal.
  4. To give up or concede; to act like a wimp.
    Jimmy was going to help me with the prank, but he punked-out at the last minute.

Usage notes

The relatively tame 21st century usage of punk was popularized by the American television show Punk'd. Until as recently as the late 20th century, punk still connoted rape or submitting to anal rape (punk-out). The second use of the term punk-out is now comparable to acting like a pussy'' and mildly implies submissive behavior in general.



  • /pøŋk/


  1. punk music

Alternative spellings

Extensive Definition

Punk may refer to:
Punk may also refer to:
  • Punk'd, a hidden-camera MTV series in which punking refers to executing a prank
  • CM Punk, professional wrestler
  • Donny the Punk, United States prison reform activist
–punk as a suffix can also be used to describe several different literary genres.
punk in Breton: Punk
punk in Italian: Punk
punk in Hebrew: פאנק
punk in Dutch: Punk
punk in Japanese: パンク (曖昧さ回避)
punk in Portuguese: Punk (desambiguação)
punk in Turkish: Punk
punk in Thai: พังก์
punk in Chinese: 龐克

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

German tinder, JD, Mickey Mouse, a nobody, a nothing, amadou, amiss, auntie, awful, bad, balderdash, baloney, barbarian, barfy, base, bi-guy, bisexual, bosh, brat, bull dyke, bum, bunk, bunkum, butch, catamite, cheap, cheesy, chicken, cipher, claptrap, coarse, common, common man, crappy, creepy, crummy, delinquent, dirty, dissatisfactory, dummy, dyke, elf, enfant terrible, fag, faggot, fairy, femme, figurehead, flit, fourth-class, fricatrice, fruit, gamin, godawful, goon, goshawful, grim, gunsel, had, hairy, hogwash, holy terror, homo, homophile, homosexual, homosexualist, hoodlum, hooligan, hot, icky, imp, inferior, insignificancy, invert, irregular, jackstraw, jerkwater, juvenile delinquent, lesbian, lightweight, little fellow, little guy, little monkey, lousy, low-class, low-grade, low-quality, low-test, man of straw, mean, measly, mediocrity, minx, mug, nance, nebbish, niggling, nobody one knows, nonentity, obscurity, one-horse, paltry, pansy, pathic, pettifogging, petty, picayune, picayunish, piddling, piffling, pip-squeak, poky, poor, puck, punk kid, puny, putrid, pyrotechnic sponge, queen, queer, rotten, ruffian, runt, sapphist, scrub, second-best, second-class, seedy, shabby, shitty, shrimp, small fry, small potato, small potatoes, small-beer, small-time, spoiled brat, spunk, squirt, squit, stinking, stinky, tacky, third-class, third-rate, thug, tinder, tinder fungus, tinderbox, tinhorn, tinny, touchwood, tough, tribade, two-bit, two-by-four, unimportant, unsatisfactory, up, urchin, vandal, vomity, whiffet, whippersnapper, worthless, wrong, yahoo, yecchy
Privacy Policy, About Us, Terms and Conditions, Contact Us
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2
Material from Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Dict
Valid HTML 4.01 Strict, Valid CSS Level 2.1