a. An implement used to crack nuts, typically consisting of two hinged metal levers between which the nut is squeezed.
b. A decorative, usually wooden statue or figurine, especially of a soldier or king, that has a hinged lever to open and close the mouth.
2. Either of two birds, Nucifraga caryocatactes of northern Eurasia or N. columbiana of western North America, that feed chiefly on the seeds of pine cones.
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.