Definition of puncture in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpʌŋ(k)tʃə/


1A small hole in a tyre resulting in an escape of air: she was on her way home when she had a puncture
More example sentences
  • But with technical problems which cars experience such as engines blowing off, gear boxes getting damaged or tyre punctures being part of this game, anything could happen.
  • We've had a few punctures and a tyre shred plus chickens running out at us but otherwise we're doing ok.
  • Even on such short trips car travel could be full of difficulties with punctures to tyres or the engine boiling going up hills.
flat tyre
informal flat
1.1A small hole in something such as the skin, caused by a sharp object: [as modifier]: a puncture wound
More example sentences
  • Connecting wires were fed under the skin of the forearm and out from a skin puncture and the wounds were sewn up.
  • Apply a comfrey leaf ointment or compress to your cut, but do not use it on puncture wounds because the skin may heal faster than the tissue below.
  • Hold the finger and hand firmly to immobilize the finger as some patients's response is to pull away as you perform the skin puncture.
hole, perforation, prick, rupture, cut, nick, slit, leak


[with object]
1Make a puncture in (something): one of the knife blows had punctured a lung
More example sentences
  • She didn't seem the least bit winded, though Shannon felt as if a knife were stabbing into his lungs, trying to puncture his chest cavity so that all the air would escape and he would suffocate.
  • The second bullet slammed right into his lung, easily puncturing the tissue and crushing his windpipe against the back of his neck.
  • Scientists have recently ruled out the possibility that the stylets of certain mites are too short to puncture cells on the front surfaces of some ferns.
make a hole in, pierce, penetrate, rupture, perforate, riddle, stab, cut, nick, slit, prick, spike, stick, impale, transfix, bore (through), drill (through), lance, tap;
decompress, depressurize, deflate
1.1 [no object] Sustain a puncture: the tyre had punctured and it would have to be replaced
More example sentences
  • Huge coal trucks have almost run Bonds's car off the road, and two local activists had their tires punctured when they went to file paperwork for a hearing.
  • Lieutenant Barnes was forced back to base on one engine with countless holes in his ship and one tire punctured.
  • Every time, a vehicle finds its tyre punctured in the middle of the road, the vendor control room of the area transmits signals to alert other vendors within a five kilometer radius.
2Cause a sudden collapse of (mood or feeling): the earlier mood of optimism was punctured
More example sentences
  • The company has punctured this fragile mood of optimism with a miscalculation of astonishing proportions.
  • Worse still is the title track - eight-and-a-half minutes of tedium and cliché interrupted by bad Riverdance impressions which really puncture the dark mood the song is trying to conjure up.
  • Sigmund Freud's theories have been punctured and pricked with doubt, but anyone who argues that he should be dropped from the canon of Western civilization needs therapy.
put an end to, cut short, reverse, prick, deflate, flatten, reduce


Late Middle English: from Latin punctura, from punct- 'pricked', from the verb pungere. The verb dates from the late 17th century.

Words that rhyme with puncture

conjuncture, juncture

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: punc|ture

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