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haunch

[hawnch, hahnch] /hɔntʃ, hɑntʃ/
noun
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.
Origin of haunch
1150-1200
1150-1200; Middle English haunche < Old French hanche < Germanic; compare Middle Dutch hanke haunch, hip, German Hanke haunch
Related forms
haunched, adjective
haunchless, adjective
Can be confused
haunch, hunch.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for haunches
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • McAuliffe was still squatting on his haunches near the burnt matting. '

    Menotah Ernest G. Henham
  • And all the while the she-wolf sat on her haunches and smiled.

    White Fang Jack London
  • The Indians rode their ponies up to the heavy doors and threw them on their haunches against them.

    Thirty Years on the Frontier Robert McReynolds
  • Jud dropped my rein and wrenched the Cardinal around on his haunches.

    Dwellers in the Hills Melville Davisson Post
  • He sat on his haunches and laughed at the audience, and pricked up his ears at the sound of a boy munching a biscuit in the pit.

  • The bear sat upon his haunches and complacently regarded the Yankee.

    The Young Miner Horatio Alger, Jr.
  • Suddenly, as though waking from a day-dream, he drew in his horse with such force as almost to throw it upon its haunches.

    Akbar P. A. S. van Limburg-Brouwer
  • He sat on his haunches and looked at us, uttering a tremendous growl.

    The Land of the Long Night Paul du Chaillu
British Dictionary definitions for haunches

haunch

/hɔːntʃ/
noun
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 food: a haunch of venison
3.
(architect) Also called hance. the part of an arch between the impost and the apex
Derived Forms
haunched, 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
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Word Origin and History for haunches

haunch

n.

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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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16
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