Main definitions of junk in English

: junk1junk2

junk1

noun

  • 1informal Old or discarded articles that are considered useless or of little value:

    ‘the cellars are full of junk’
    [as modifier] ‘we need to clear out our junk room’
    • ‘Hey, you'd be surprised at the useless junk people will buy for a buck.’
    • ‘The paint was peeling, many of the rooms were cluttered with junk and the whole place looked sorry for itself.’
    • ‘Sometimes, nothing works and the result is a pile of useless junk.’
    • ‘One room was full of junk, and one was the bathroom.’
    • ‘So a few weeks ago, the two astronauts who live there tossed out some useless junk, like so many old hubcaps for the trash heap.’
    • ‘Any other plastics have to be discarded as junk.’
    • ‘Only in Canada… do we leave cars worth thousands of dollars in the driveway and put our useless junk in the garage.’
    • ‘After they vanished, the basement was still full of junk metal and glass.’
    • ‘One thing it does require is that rooftops be cleared of junk or garbage that might block sunlight - an added environmental benefit.’
    • ‘You can hardly enter or leave the Royal Garden Plaza without tripping over someone's junk or having useless articles thrust into your face.’
    • ‘He can also remember car number plates off pat and his room is full of junk that he can take apart, examine and rebuild.’
    • ‘Most were thieves or assassins but others were there to make good money off of their useless junk.’
    • ‘You take your useless junk and list it, and if someone wants it, you send it to them instead of putting it out with the trash.’
    • ‘Can you believe this elegant gown was once discarded as junk?’
    • ‘You rummage through piles of junk in the hopes of finding a gem amongst the detritus.’
    • ‘With everything put away, and relatively all garbage, junk, and useless things in their respective places, there was only one more thing to do.’
    • ‘Vanessa did the digging with a trowel, discarding obvious junk and storing everything else in plastic buckets for later examination.’
    • ‘Only old junk and useless metal compartments were still around.’
    • ‘I was sorting out the books on Beth's bookshelves to make more room for our junk when I found her copy of the highway code.’
    • ‘In theory, it should mean no calls from that phone will be accepted - making the handset a useless piece of junk.’
    useless things, discarded things, rubbish, clutter, stuff, odds and ends, bits and pieces, bric-a-brac, oddments, flotsam and jetsam, white elephants
    garbage, refuse, litter, scrap, waste, debris, detritus, dross
    leavings, leftovers, remnants, cast-offs, rejects
    lumber
    trash
    mullock
    dreck
    gubbins, odds and sods
    crap, shit
    rummage
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Worthless writing, talk, or ideas:
      ‘I can't write this kind of junk’
      • ‘But also I wasn't going to put my name on a piece of junk.’
      • ‘Junk lawsuits are expensive for doctors and hospitals to fight in court.’
      • ‘What kind of president will be elected by the new generation that has effectively discarded conscience as old junk?’
      • ‘For the email, set up a filter for the addresses that sends his junk straight to the trash.’
      • ‘Have you ever tried to do marketing research, only to realize that 9 out of 10 articles are junk?’
      • ‘It's not that hard to make money - and it is worth it if it frees you from a poisonous environment which is turning your output into unreadable junk which has no value.’
      • ‘This process argument is distinct from the substantive argument about whether peer-review reduces the amount of junk in law reviews.’
      • ‘This newspaper does not lack ephemeral junk articles.’
      • ‘I think the Internet has still got a strong element of co-operation when you delve beyond all the useless junk and corporate machinery.’
      • ‘It's just that stuff with princes and princesses and junk.’
      • ‘A large percentage of information encountered is clearly useless - junk e - mail, for example.’
      • ‘When my telephone line was activated I received many junk calls and fax machine sounds when I answered my phone.’
      • ‘The puzzling question has been why there would be long stretches of junk or nonsense DNA in the genome.’
      • ‘If you think this is worthless junk, wait until I post all my high school poetry!’
      • ‘Too often the process of dumbing down is associated with the expansion of junk television and trash entertainment.’
      • ‘I don't want games, I don't want fiddling around, one-night-stand junk, etc.’
      • ‘To combat this, direct mailers will do anything to get you to open their junk, no matter how dishonest.’
      • ‘And precious bandwidth is being eaten up by this worthless junk.’
      • ‘More often than not the shelves are stuffed with worthless junk, the typical used copies of the mindless drivel produced by most American game manufacturers.’
      • ‘I also hear the excuse that there is ‘too much junk in gun magazines.’’
    2. 1.2 A person's belongings:
      ‘I only have an hour to get all my junk together’
    3. 1.3US vulgar slang A man's genitals.
    4. 1.4Finance Junk bonds:
      ‘he invested in junk’
      • ‘If the hedge funds shun European junk, that dramatic shift could drive up rates on these securities even further.’
      • ‘Corporate spreads generally narrowed, with junk performing well.’
      • ‘Corporate bonds were mixed, with investment grade performing well and junk appearing vulnerable.’
      • ‘Corporate debt performed well, with junk spreads narrowing significantly.’
      • ‘It is our view that the relative poor performance of U.S. junk and corporate debt issues provides clear and ominous portents for the coming cycle downturn.’
  • 2informal Heroin:

    ‘you do anything for junk—cheat, lie, steal’
    • ‘Many of them were in the process of shooting junk into their veins from stained needles.’
    • ‘Even heroin can be used recreationally; believe it or not, creating a junk habit takes time, money and a whole lot of junk.’
    • ‘Also if I had had some sober time and took a shot of junk, I immediately began spiralling down into the dope slavery of everyday use.’
    • ‘Bettie, now preferring the name Marilyn, had been on and off of heroin for years now but it was the first junk needle Callahan had let near her.’
    • ‘Sasha, do normal people inject junk into their veins?’
  • 3The lump of oily fibrous tissue in a sperm whale's head, containing spermaceti.

    • ‘Oil is contained in the spermaceti organ and in the spermaceti bodies of the junk.’
    • ‘Oil of the first quality (spermaceti) is found in the case and junk chambers in the head and was sometimes stored separately from oil.’

verb

[WITH OBJECT]informal
  • Discard or abandon unceremoniously:

    ‘sort out what could be sold off and junk the rest’
    • ‘Barbara Castle's imaginative plan to connect the state pension to earnings was junked.’
    • ‘So part of the essay attempts to identify the sort of praise and blame that can be practised in a dispassionate and clear-headed way, while junking the rest.’
    • ‘But I would secretly engage a cleaner forthwith, having junked my objections.’
    • ‘In July, everyone held their breath as the Bank of Japan met to consider junking its 18-month-old zero interest-rate policy.’
    • ‘It is for sure that the old framework has been junked.’
    • ‘We got some of it done then, but we junked it.’
    • ‘They're stupid policies and deserve to be junked.’
    • ‘Now, apparently, our flat is worth almost double what we paid for it… in just two years… after just junking the old carpets and adding fresh paint?’
    • ‘It is also seen in junking his prejudice towards the US alliance and his outline of a more realistic foreign policy.’
    • ‘South and west of this line people live by marginal agriculture and off archaic industries, such as fixing old cars and later junking them.’
    • ‘The automakers were of the view that 10-year-old commercial vehicles and 15-year-old personal vehicles should be junked.’
    • ‘This stuff was going to be junked and in a sense I memorialised it.’
    • ‘I think the color-coded system should be junked.’
    • ‘The General Insurance Association has thrown the ball back in the court of the four companies after junking its empanelment of third party administrators.’
    • ‘Some were simply transmitted live without anyone bothering to record them, while others, which were recorded, were then junked in order to save space or re-use expensive tape.’
    • ‘It junked a proposal to allow for-profit hospitals.’
    • ‘That will open the way for the White House to eventually propose junking the whole system in favor of a consumption tax, he predicts.’
    • ‘Despite its good-looking veneer, its breakneck pace, its daisy-chain of expert set-pieces, some crucial logic or motive appears to have been junked along the way.’
    • ‘I have the luxury now of being able to spend a few days doing something pleasant and then junking the result, taking my joy from the doing rather than from the product.’
    • ‘You can also email media advisories, but avoid attachments; emails with attachments may be junked automatically to avoid viruses.’
    throw away, throw out, discard, get rid of, dispose of, scrap, toss out, jettison, dispense with
    chuck, chuck away, chuck out, dump, ditch, bin, get shut of
    bung away, bung out, get shot of
    View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English (denoting an old or inferior rope): of unknown origin. junk dates from the mid 19th century.

Pronunciation:

junk

/dʒʌŋk/

Main definitions of junk in English

: junk1junk2

junk2

noun

  • A flat-bottomed sailing vessel of a kind typical of China and the East Indies, with a prominent stem and lugsails.

    • ‘Her squadrons were kept busy flying combat air patrols over inshore forces, strafing mine-laying junks, and supporting troops ashore.’
    • ‘There is some evidence for development of robust, high-seas sailing junks in China by thirteenth century AD.’
    • ‘Of those that reached the shores of Formosa and splashed through the water to the junks, we hurried to untie the ships and rowed fiercely regardless of the winds.’
    • ‘The most stylish party nowadays would be one held on a yacht, reminiscent of historic entertainment on royal boats or magnificent junks.’
    • ‘Shipping was the era's celebrated industry, and Shanghai was an artery for the silk and tea that flowed between the Orient and the West on full-masted junks and swollen clippers.’
    • ‘Also the junks brought artisans and tradespeople to the Islands.’
    • ‘In this they closely resembled the Apollo project, begun 540 years after the great junks had sailed from Beijing.’
    • ‘One supporter was Zheng Cheng-gong, also known as Koxinga, a half-Japanese supporter of the Mings, who led an army of 100,000 troops and 3,000 junks.’
    • ‘A century before Columbus and his fellow Europeans began to make their way to the new world, fleets of giant Chinese junks carried porcelains, lacquerware, copper coins, and silks far and wide.’
    • ‘This trade became regularized by the 1640s, with Chinese junks bringing the product to Batavia (modern Jakarta), where it was purchased by the Dutch and shipped by them to Holland.’
    • ‘The ships, huge junks nearly five hundred feet long and built from the finest teak, were under the command of Emperor Zhu Di's loyal eunuch admirals.’
    • ‘It was built in 1646 with materials brought in bat-winged junks from China and is the oldest Chinese Temple in Malaysia.’
    • ‘Though hovercrafts and high-speed jetfoils have crowded out ancient sampans and junks, fishing thrives and fish remains as significant an input in the Chinese culinary tradition as before.’
    • ‘The hotel bar has incredible views over the harbour, past the flotilla of sampans, junks and cargo ships, to the jumble of skyscrapers which make up the Central district of Hong Kong island.’
    • ‘The Chinese had discovered much earlier, around the 5th century ad, that scurvy at sea could be avoided by carrying live ginger plants on board junks.’
    • ‘From junks to dhows, clippers to cruise liners, humble riverboats to awesome battlefleets, this is the definitive chronicle of great vessels, legendary journeys, and heroic seafarers.’
    • ‘China found itself up against the fruits of the British Industrial Revolution, pitting junks against steam warships.’
    • ‘It's a poor fishing village where the people live in sampans and junks.’
    • ‘After four months of intense training, Pak, Malcom and 118 partisans boarded four junks and set sail for the mainland.’
    • ‘Heavily armed clippers, any one of which could have dealt with a whole fleet of Chinese war junks, were spreading opium up the entire Chinese coast.’

Origin

Mid 16th century: from obsolete French juncque or Portuguese junco, from Malay jong, reinforced by Dutch jonk.

Pronunciation:

junk

/dʒʌŋk/