a. The characteristic sound made by a hen when brooding or calling its chicks.
b. A sound similar to this.
2. Informal A stupid or foolish person.
v. clucked, cluck·ing, clucks
1. To utter the characteristic sound of a hen.
2. To make a sound similar to that of a hen, as in coaxing a horse.
1. To call by making the characteristic sound of a hen or a similar sound.
2. To express by clucking: He clucked disapproval.
[Middle English clokken, from Old English cloccian.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.