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hackle

Syllabification: hack·le
Pronunciation: /ˈhak(ə)l
 
/

Definition of hackle in English:

noun

1 (hackles) Erectile hairs along the back of a dog or other animal that rise when it is angry or alarmed.
Example sentences
  • The dog stared, ears flattening, and she saw his hackles rise along his spine.
  • Her eyes practically exploded with flames and her hair rose a little, like a dog rising its hackles.
  • Sekher felt his hackles rise, claws extruded in fear.
2 (often hackles) A long, narrow feather on the neck or saddle of a domestic rooster or other bird.
Example sentences
  • Even before they hit the ground both birds fan their hackles out, resembling nothing so much as a suddenly opened umbrella.
  • Another distinct bird is the Nicobar pigeon with its metallic green hackles and sheen on its plumage.
2.1 Fishing A feather wound around a fishing fly so that its filaments are splayed out.
Example sentences
  • I clip off all the bottom and top hackles leaving the side hackles to ensure the fly sits in the surface film.
  • Different coloured hackle fibres for tail and throat hackles can work well.
  • Take ribbing wire through the hackle again in open
2.2Fly-fishing feathers collectively.
Example sentences
  • I believe that the palmered body hackle causes a disturbance in the water and this is an attraction itself.
  • Twist peacock herl ends and wind on in front of hackle to form a neat head.
  • At the front I use two or three strands of three inches of round rubber hackle.
2.3A bunch of feathers in a military headdress.
Example sentences
  • Faced with the famous red hackles of the the organization, they dropped their bags and applauded.
  • He will attempt to claim credit for preserving individual regimental identities within the new Scottish regiment by keeping their traditional cap badges, hackles and other distinctive traditions.
  • Down the main street strides the major of the army, an icy wind pulling at the red hackle on his bonnet.

verb

[with object] Back to top  
Dress or comb with a hackle.
Example sentences
  • Then the stems were hackled (from the Old High German word that also gave us hook) to remove any remaining non-fibrous material by drawing them through a big comb consisting of a bed of nails in a wooden board.
  • In August we shall keep many people busy with retting and hackling, and by late September have much linen thread to spin.
  • Spinning wheels lined the walls and at the central tables others sorted, hackled and carded the wool.

Origin

late Middle English (sense 2 of the noun): variant of hatchel.

More
  • Hackles are the long feathers on the neck of a fighting cock or the hairs on the top of a dog's neck, which stand up when the animal is aggressive or excited. So if you make someone's hackles rise you make them angry or indignant. In the Middle Ages a hackle or heckle was also an instrument with parallel steel pins used to prepare flax for spinning by splitting the fibres and pulling them straight. This vigorous action was transferred to giving speakers an equally hard time or heckling them in the early 19th century. The word goes back to an ancient root related to hook. See also tease

Phrases

make someone's hackles rise

1
Make someone angry or indignant.

Words that rhyme with hackle

cackle, crackle, grackle, jackal, mackle, shackle, tackle

Definition of hackle in:

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