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hunker

[huhng-ker] /ˈhʌŋ kər/
verb (used without object)
1.
to squat on one's heels (often followed by down).
2.
Informal.
  1. to hunch:
    The driver hunkered over the steering wheel.
  2. to hide, hide out, or take shelter (usually followed by down):
    The escaped convicts hunkered down in a cave in the mountains.
  3. to hold resolutely or stubbornly to a policy, opinion, etc., when confronted by criticism, opposition, or unfavorable circumstances (usually followed by down):
    Though all the evidence was against him, he hunkered down and refused to admit his guilt.
3.
Slang. to lumber along; walk or move slowly or aimlessly.
noun
4.
hunkers, one's haunches.
Idioms
5.
on one's hunkers,
  1. British Informal. squatting on one's heels.
  2. suffering a period of poverty, bad luck, or the like.
Origin
1710-1720
1710-20; apparently hunk (perhaps nasalized variant of huck haunch; akin to Old Norse hūka to crouch) + -er6

Hunker

[huhng-ker] /ˈhʌŋ kər/
noun
1.
a member of the conservative faction in the Democratic Party in New York State, 1845–48.
Compare Barnburner (def 3).
Origin
1835-45, Americanism; origin uncertain
Related forms
Hunkerism, noun
Hunkerous, adjective
Hunkerousness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for hunker

hunker

/ˈhʌŋkə/
verb
1.
(intransitive) often foll by down. to squat; crouch
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for hunker
v.

"to squat, crouch," 1720, Scottish, of uncertain origin, possibly from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse huka "to crouch," hoka, hokra "to crawl." Hunker down, Southern U.S. dialectal phrase, popularized c.1965, from northern British hunker "haunch." Related: Hunkered; hunkering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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