- 1Strike with the fist: he punched her in the face and ran offMore example sentences
hit, strike, knock, thump, thwack, jab, cuff, clip, smash, slam, welt; batter, buffet, thrash, pound, pummel, rain blows on, drub, box someone's ears• informal sock, slug, biff, bop, wallop, clobber, bash, whack, clout, crown, poke, lick, let someone have it, knock into the middle of next week, lam, whomp, deck, floor
- The men assaulted the guards, knocking the male to the floor and kicking and punching him while pointing a gun at him.
- She climbed in the kitchen window and saw him with a knife, the court heard, and believing she was at risk kicked and punched him to the floor.
- Another man, in a Mercedes coupe, was punched and kicked as he grappled with carjackers who struck at Dudley Hill in the city.
- 2Press (a button or key on a machine): I punched the button to summon the liftMore example sentences
- He swung the machine aside and punched a few buttons on a control panel, hoisting the machine up to the left side of the ceiling.
- I punched the button again, pressing my finger against the stupid button until the area around my nail was white with pressure.
- He reached over and punched a unmarked button on the side of the machine that could only be described as a doorframe.
- 2.1 (punch something in/into) Enter information by punching a button or key on a machine: he crossed to the VDU on his other desk and punched in a series of numbersMore example sentences
- You only have to punch the information into a drum machine once.
- As well, many transactions such as banking that used to require fronting up to a real person can now be done by punching numbers into a machine.
- They'll simultaneously punch random buttons in separate elevators at the Waldorf, and if they emerge on the same floor, it'll be kismet.
nounBack to top
- 1A blow with the fist: he reeled under the well-aimed punchMore example sentences
blow, hit, knock, thump, thwack, box, jab, fist, cuff, clip, smash, slam, welt, straight, uppercut, hook, body blowNorth American • informal boff, bust, whale• dated buffet• archaic plug
- They ram into the wall, exchanging body blows and punches as they scuffle.
- A woman staying on the same corridor heard loud punches and likened the blows to those sometimes heard in TV programmes.
- But domestic violence doesn't always manifest itself in punches and blows.
- 1.1 [mass noun] • informal The strength needed to deliver a blow: he has the punch to knock out anyone in his divisionMore example sentences
- Just when both sides appeared to be settling for a point Nish delivered the killer punch when he popped up at the back post to convert Hamilton's miss-hit shot.
- 1.2 [in singular] • informal The power to impress or attract attention; impact: photos give their arguments an extra visual punchMore example sentences
- The full force of his indomitable logic hits you like a power punch!
- A caffeinated punch adds to its powers of rejuvenation.
- Their breakthrough song undoubtedly rocks the venue, with the power punch of a stand-out track.
beat someone to the punch
- • informal Anticipate or forestall someone’s actions: he was driven on by the fear that someone might beat him to the punch in documenting the movementMore example sentences
- Should we really believe that David floated this story without further confirmation because he was concerned that John might beat him to the punch?
- You get a story and you want to go with it before somebody else beats you to the punch, so sometimes it doesn't get checked as thoroughly.
- I am about to share this theory with Byatt, but she beats me to the punch, with yet another theory of her own.
punch above one's weight
- • informal Engage in an activity or contest perceived as being beyond one’s abilities: there is something about the British that makes them punch above their weight in a number of entertainment industriesMore example sentences
- We might be able to give UK small businesses a huge opportunity in Europe for punching above their weight.
- Christie's realism got him into trouble with some supporters whose expectations have grown quicker than the club when he insisted that last season Inverness had again been punching above their weight.
- However, Straka denies suggestions that his team are punching above their weight in Europe, arguing instead that their current domestic standing does not do them justice.
punch the (time) clock North American
- (Of an employee) clock in or out.More example sentences
- He denied the charges, pointing out that he had spoken to his supervisor and punched the time clock.
- Generally speaking, workers didn't start punching the clock because they were forced to but because they wanted to.
- I've punched the clock from 9-5 for twenty-five years for the corporation.
- Be employed in a conventional job with regular hours: he punches the clock from nine to five and is happy with his jobMore example sentences
- At least McGillivary and Barnes punched the clock for a couple of years.
- My work schedule is very elastic; I don't have to go to meetings, I don't have to punch the clock, I don't have to have my butt in a chair between certain hours.
- But finally, I got away from punching the clock.
punch in (or out)
- North American (Of an employee) clock in (or out): she couldn’t punch in, because there were no time clocksMore example sentences
- The greatest feeling I get as an entrepreneur is when I go into the back, into the facility here and to see the employees punching out on their time cards to go home and on payday to know that I've contributed to their livelihood.
- The absolute worst work condition we ever heard about was a 1960's factory where the owner made all workers punch out on the time clock to use the bathroom.
- I watched her absently walk over to the clock and punch out.
- More example sentences
- Graham opens a drawer in the abandoned Apollo Mission Control room and someone's stuff is still in there: rubber stamps, stationary supplies, and paper punchers.
- It is going to be a very explosive fight between two aggressive punchers.
- In his two defeats, both by knockout, he lost concentration and showed that, like many big punchers, he can be rendered unconscious too easily.
late Middle English (as a verb in the sense 'puncture, prod'): variant of pounce1.
- 1A device or machine for making holes in materials such as paper, leather, or metal.More example sentences
- Use those bits of leftover wrapping paper and a hole punch to make confetti (a great job for the kids)!
- Give each child a handful of hole punches and let them have sprinkle these over the paper.
- You may put a hole in the top with a paper punch and tie a ribbon through the hole.
- 2A tool or machine for impressing a design or stamping a die on a material.More example sentences
- He began to concentrate on the design and manufacture of punch, stamp and draw tools for the production of metal car panels.
- Hollerith designed punches specially made for his system, the Hollerith Electric Tabulating System.
- After it is cut down, sheet stock goes to the turret punch to get holes put in as needed, goes to a brake press to be bent.
verb[with object] Back to top
- 1Pierce a hole in (paper, leather, metal, etc.) with or as though with a punch: she handed him her ticket, which he punched and returned with a grinMore example sentences
- Corresponding holes in the front of the parfleche were punched with a tapestry needle.
- The papers are neatly punched, indexed and occasionally underlined with red pen.
- Megawati shouted to her supporters while demonstrating how to punch ballot papers for her party's number and logo of a bull with a white nose at a soccer field in the town of Gianyar.
- 1.1Pierce (a hole) with or as though with a punch: you can grow the seeds in a yogurt pot with a hole punched in the bottomMore example sentences
- In most manufacturing, the flash hole is simply punched through the bottom of the primer pocket.
- In a small garden, fill plastic rubbish sacks with them, tie the tops, punch a few holes at the bottom, and leave them to rot down in a quiet corner of the garden till next autumn.
- He punches spy holes in the wooden shutters so when he is indoors he can look out whether he is sitting or standing.
- A drink made from wine or spirits mixed with water, fruit juices, spices, etc., and typically served hot: we sat drinking our rum punchMore example sentences
- Iced tea, fruit punch, water, milk, coffee, and hot tea were complimentary.
- Pick your choice of tipple from white or red wine, fruit punch or lager as your peruse the menu and enjoy live reggae music from a local band.
- Fruit punch made from fruit juice is an excellent source of Vitamin C, providing about 35g of vitamin C per serving.
mid 17th century: apparently from Sanskrit pañca 'five, five kinds of' (because the drink had five ingredients).
- 1 (Punch) A grotesque, hook-nosed humpbacked buffoon, the chief male character of the Punch and Judy puppet show. Punch is the English variant of a stock character derived ultimately from Italian commedia dell’arte. Also called Punchinello.
- 2 (in full Suffolk punch) A draught horse of a short-legged thickset breed.More example sentences
- The Suffolk Punch is the oldest and now rarest breed of heavy horse.
- Our conservation herd of about 40 horses is among the last surviving Suffolk Punch, a breed that originated more than two centuries ago in eastern (Norfolk and Suffolk counties) England.
as pleased (or proud) as Punch
- Feeling great delight or pride: he was pleased as Punch at the thought of the visitMore example sentences
- If we give our best and St. Mary's of Galway go home with the cup, we'll congratulate them and salute their success, and we'll still be as proud as Punch of our lads.
- I am really sad that Fergie was not around on Thursday when I walked out with England at Lord's because he would have been as proud as Punch for me.
- Because if you visit the region where he started out 10 or 15 years ago, you will quickly discover that his one-time colleagues are as proud as Punch to shake his hand.
mid 17th century (as a dialect term denoting a short, fat person): abbreviation of Punchinello.