Definition of sock in English:



  • 1A garment for the foot and lower part of the leg, typically knitted from wool, cotton, or nylon.

    • ‘Fleece picks up lint easily and a fleece garment washed with wool socks or terry towels will never look the same again.’
    • ‘She had removed her black boots at the door and had thick wool socks on her feet.’
    • ‘The hallway was lined with black granite tiles and it felt slippery underneath my sock covered feet.’
    • ‘In the evenings, my mother read to us, and we knitted socks and sweaters for my dad in the army, stoked the fire and listened to the radio, mainly to Children's Hour, and the news, of course.’
    • ‘I've found that good quality wool socks from the Gap or even Target last a really long time and are both comfortable and stylish.’
    • ‘Wearing clean cotton socks will protect the feet from fungi living in your shoes.’
    • ‘In more formal settings, black over-the-calf stretch nylon cotton or wool socks are fitting.’
    • ‘His feet were now covered only by his wool socks, which would make less noise, but make footing slippery on the marble floor.’
    • ‘I put a dress over her hospital pajamas, socks on her feet, placed her in a chair and we had breakfast together.’
    • ‘In the States, wool mittens and socks are sometimes used as adornments in wedding ceremonies.’
    • ‘On not so cold days you can use a cycling sock, colder days require an upgrade to cotton socks and on the coldest days you can go wool.’
    • ‘I had changed out of my uniform in grey sweats and a navy UCLA sweatshirt, with thick socks on my feet.’
    • ‘Cotton socks absorb moisture and keep feet drier than nylon socks.’
    • ‘These boots will give a good grip on wet decks and worn with woollen thermal or neoprene socks will keep your feet as warm as toast.’
    • ‘Madame Cholet, a kindly countrywoman who lived in the neighbouring house, knitted her woolly socks to keep her feet warm during pruning.’
    • ‘Dry your feet completely afterward, and wear cotton socks which let your feet breathe.’
    • ‘I wear a bright orange fleece sweatshirt, some nylon running pants and wool socks.’
    • ‘Even with her wool sweaters, shirts, leggings, socks, and cloak, she was still cold.’
    • ‘The patient, who can use the device while sitting, places a cotton sock over his or her foot before the cuff is placed.’
    • ‘In that case, you might want to check out the regular, non-contrast, Land's End cotton rag or wool rag socks.’
    1. 1.1A removable inner sole placed inside a shoe or boot for added warmth or to improve the fit.
    2. 1.2A white marking on the lower part of a horse's leg, not extending as far as the knee or hock.
      ‘a Welsh pony mare, black with four white socks’
      • ‘Shorty is a 3-year old brown gelding with a star, strip, snip, connected lower tip, left front sock and right front pastern.’
      • ‘Ranger is a 4-year old sorrel with a flaxen mane and tail, right hind sock, and left hind stocking.’
  • 2informal A hard blow.

    ‘a sock on the jaw’
    • ‘The Maus mounted a 128 mm main gun that would punch through enemy armor like a thrown sock punches through a wall made out of gelatin.’
    • ‘Instead of a hard sock in the arm, he got a soft smack in the arm.’
    • ‘Apparently, it was my sock that broke the belt, so in other words it was my fault.’
    • ‘I was treated to a sock on the jaw by the same thugs later that night.’
    • ‘When he pulled up too hard on landing and porpoised into a stall the resulting crash hurt like a sock in the mouth.’
    1. 2.1US [mass noun]Force or emphasis.
      ‘we have enough speed and sock in our line-up to score runs’
      • ‘If Martin can succeed, the lineup has enough sock elsewhere to cash in.’
      • ‘Coming up from the minors is the right-handed-hitting Juan Uribe, who has good sock but can be undisciplined on breaking balls.’


[WITH OBJECT]informal
  • Hit forcefully.

    ‘Jess socked his father across the face’
    • ‘My father turns around and Tristan socks him in the face.’
    • ‘Lanz was struck silent, and then socked Felix in the shoulder.’
    • ‘I socked you in the nose because you deserved it!’
    • ‘With that Amanda socked Austin in the face and Erika punched Eric in the stomach.’
    • ‘‘I feel like socking you one,’ I said, surprised that indeed, I really did.’
    • ‘This produced the strange sensation of Jensen's head being rocked one way then the other as if being socked around each side of the head by twin sparring partners at the same instant.’
    • ‘He says he socked a taxi inspector at the airport.’
    • ‘In another incident, a gang member socked me in the face.’
    • ‘We're so close, that when he grabbed at the Ding Dong, I only socked him reasonably hard in the arm.’
    • ‘Predictions were a coastal storm would meet the kind of weather that socked the Midwest earlier in the week.’
    • ‘The guy protested and laid a hand on Novak - who responded by socking him and threatening to knock his teeth out.’
    • ‘But this did nothing to stop Grant from fulfilling his end of the showdown; he socked Hearns with a straight right to the body and followed up with a left hook that must have made Hearns' cranium vibrate.’
    • ‘I just hope he doesn't sock David on that heavily rouged jaw.’
    • ‘I punched him in the stomach before socking him in the eye.’
    • ‘I would sock such people in the face, but my fingers are too cold even for that.’
    • ‘I woke up ready to face the day without feeling as if I'd been socked over the head.’
    • ‘He tapped Brett on the shoulder and socked one to him straight.’
    • ‘So he did what most kids would do; he punched me in the eye, socked me in the stomach and stole my money.’
    • ‘The only thing that stopped him from socking Scott in the face was the fact that Jessi didn't look too happy.’
    • ‘Rao, the seasoned drummer, unsheathes his mridangam (a south Indian drum) from its cloth case and tunes its upper head, socking its rawhide binding with a rock to change the pitch.’
    strike, slap, smack, cuff, punch, beat, thrash, thump, batter, belabour, drub, hook, pound, smash, slam, welt, pummel, hammer, bang, knock, swat, whip, flog, cane, sucker-punch, rain blows on, give someone a, give someone a good beating, give someone a good drubbing, box someone's ears
    View synonyms


  • bless your (or his/her/their) little cotton socks

    • Used as an expression of endearment.

      ‘you're so sweet, bless your little cotton socks’
      • ‘As I mentioned, the latest administration (God bless their little cotton socks) has reacted rather strongly to this.’
      • ‘Well, bless my little cotton socks, it works!’
      • ‘You just have to admit he tries hard, Bless his little cotton socks.’
      • ‘Bless her little cotton socks, she says it a lot.’
      • ‘The official history of the short story is written by the professors of English Literature, God bless their little cotton socks.’
      • ‘Guy (bless his little cotton socks) stepped into the breach and made a few calls.’
      • ‘"Sounds as if Asmodeus is kinda busy, though, bless his little cotton socks, soat least you're spared, you know, his real up close and personal attention."’
      • ‘Clive and Tommy, bless their little cotton socks thought that he was going to be killing us and they would have front row seats.’
      • ‘Interestingly, the little beauty that is amplifier has continued to function throughout, bless its little cotton socks.’
      • ‘Then as we were able to run we came out on a road and there were the walkers so they could short cut bless their little cotton socks.’
  • knock (or blow) someone's socks off

    • informal Amaze or impress someone.

      ‘this dish will knock your socks off!’
      • ‘The other kind of trailer is the one that knocks your socks off, stands your hair on end, sears the retina and leaves you gasping.’
      • ‘So starting with our September / October issue, we will present a four-part series on training that I'm positive will knock your socks off.’
      • ‘The salesman, referring to the just-invented diesel tractor, said, ‘I'm here to tell you about a machine that will knock your socks off.’’
      • ‘With reds, you can go from a light, easy-drinking variety to a full-bodied wine that can knock your socks off!’
      • ‘I just had one solo, so I blew some real good blues notes and knocked their socks off.’
      • ‘I'm also trying to put together a new site design using the latest whizzy web technology that'll knock your socks off and turn the blog-design world on its head.’
      • ‘I have discovered a drummer that will knock your socks off, his name is Carl Hupp.’
      • ‘I found each of these films individually wonderful, but together, they just knocked my socks off.’
      • ‘Go in as a temp, knock their socks off - and who knows, you might find the job of your dreams right there.’
      • ‘Chairman of the school's governors, Dave Waters said: ‘It has just knocked my socks off - we expected around 70 per cent in our favour - but 98 per cent is just unbelievable.’’
  • knock the socks off

    • informal Surpass or beat.

      • ‘Unless he knocks the socks off Mularkey and Clements this off season and preseason, he likely will be the backup in Week One of 2005.’
      • ‘The 90's have seen the whole group, not just Paul, mature into great songwriters, to the point where their 2 ‘comeback’ albums knock the socks off all previous releases.’
      • ‘I believe a professionally delivered security assessment knocks the socks off a classic penetration test for value and cost effectiveness.’
      • ‘I've spent a lot of time in the swanky bars of London, Leeds and all other cities around the UK, but I have to say, Manchester in general knocks the socks off anywhere.’
      • ‘The three top cheeses in the competition would knock the socks off most Continental varieties.’
      • ‘Gilbert agreed: ‘This is a 16 bit processor that knocks the socks off 32 bit.’’
      • ‘The creation of blockbuster new products that knock the socks off the competition, sets a new standard for your industry, and even creates new market categories are ultimately the surest way to growth.’
      • ‘The half-year figures to June 30 show not just that the company's overseas operations are matching its domestic performance, but that its operations in Britain and the United States are knocking the socks off its Irish parent.’
      • ‘So this week I've chosen three really simple dishes that take no time to prepare and knock the socks off any shop-bought stuff.’
      • ‘This is an advanced anti-aging cream that knocks the socks off its pricier competitors.’
  • —— one's socks off

    • informal Do something with great energy and enthusiasm.

      ‘she acted her socks off’
      • ‘Prepare to laugh your socks off with the craziest clowns in town and top circus acts from all over the world at the Circus Hilarious show which takes place at Forum 28, Duke Street, on Wednesday, February 16, at 2pm and 5pm.’
      • ‘Club entertainments manager Norman Russon said: ‘Everyone had worked their socks off and we raised thousands of pounds.’’
      • ‘My daughter and my granddaughters were sobbing their socks off.’
      • ‘Rock and dance your socks off to the tunes of DJ Steady B and guests from the Kidnapper Crew, whose films will be projected on the walls.’
      • ‘And within three minutes you're laughing your socks off, which is a good sign.’
      • ‘Did I see you on the telly, singing your socks off in front of Simon, Sharon and Louis?’
      • ‘Mrs Avison, 54, who has been headteacher at the school for five years, said: ‘Some of the pupils worked their socks off to get G grades.’’
      • ‘That said however, there's a great self belief in this team and the players will work their socks off for each other.’
      • ‘And Rev Phillips reserved special praise for church-goers who had helped push forward the renovations: ‘They have worked their socks off over the last 20 years.’’
      • ‘They have worked their socks off to achieve it, which is wonderful.’
  • pull one's socks up

    • informal Make an effort to improve one's work, performance, or behaviour.

      • ‘I'll do my best to pull my socks up, get my act together, and make up for the lost time.’
      • ‘Then, and only then, players who begin to skip training sessions when all hope of league success had evaporated, would have to pull their socks up and knuckle down to realistic training throughout the entire season.’
      • ‘A more professional approach to the game has made each member of the side a better fielder, keener to win, no longer prepared to be pushed about by sides that could beat them if they pulled their socks up.’
      • ‘There's also no home page so I've got to pull my socks up and get that organised before next Tuesday when I start college and my spare time disappears.’
      • ‘This is the seventh year, although we've got to pull our socks up to win the Summer judging and make it seven on a trot.’
      • ‘‘The authorities need to pull their socks up and I am hoping that after the election fever which is gripping the Town Hall is over, we can start the ball rolling,’ she says.’
      • ‘Now we've finally been appointed it might hit home to one or two that they need to pull their socks up!’
      • ‘We'll have to pull our socks up and get back to what we know we can do.’
      • ‘At one stage the boys were huffing and puffing a bit but when the supporters shouted from the side I knew I had to pull my socks up and give it my all.’
      • ‘County Hall chiefs have promised to pull their socks up after this comprehensive review.’
  • put a sock in it

    • informal [usually in imperative]Stop talking.

      • ‘Whatever transpires, never, repeat never, simply complain to the parents about the noise, inform your local police or neighborhood authority, or tell the budding basher to put a sock in it.’
      • ‘Once she'd put a sock in it, I did what we all do when we're lost: I asked a nice man the way.’
      • ‘Looking at her, I exhaled and shook my head, deciding to just put a sock in it for the evening.’
      • ‘The next time you want to weigh in on U.S. tax policy, with all due respect, put a sock in it.’
      • ‘She's a really good audience, too; she'll listen to - and laugh at - my stupid jokes when everyone else just tells me to put a sock in it.’
      • ‘If a luminary on the campaign team goes ‘off message’ with a genuinely sensible observation, put a sock in it, pronto.’
      • ‘So after a lifetime of being told to put a sock in it while you're on the job and in the field, where has this left you?’
      • ‘Jack went and sat down in the chair next to me and made a face, ‘Eh, put a sock in it, you old hag.’’
      • ‘How true, how very true, you are so wise, but put a sock in it, eh?’
      • ‘With enough bytes already spilled (somewhat heatedly) on the Web about this, I decided to put a sock in it.’
      be quiet, keep quiet, stay quiet, be silent, keep silent, stay silent, hold one's tongue, keep one's lips sealed
      View synonyms
  • sock and buskin

    • archaic The theatrical profession; drama.

      • ‘In the seclusion of a then inland Calvinistic college the seductions of the drama still pursued him, and sock and buskin made their prints all along the pages of the ‘Pastime.’’
      • ‘Mills said he had given up his trade of glue-making for the sock and buskin, and he hoped soon to have an engagement at one of the minors.’
  • sock it to someone

    • informal Attack or make a forceful impression on someone.

      • ‘That's right, sandals are made to be worn without socks, so don't let the fashion police spot you because they might end up socking it to you.’
      • ‘Yet, I feel the collaborative process, in which the script was developed, missed a good opportunity to really sock it to us.’
      • ‘It's also wrong to sock it to Hobson and Eastern Bays residents because they live in more expensive suburbs.’
      • ‘Thanks to the many readers who socked it to us for the spelling error.’
      • ‘I wanted to burst out laughing; Eliza was socking it to her!’
      • ‘The real question is: who is the audience for this curious little show, the latest from a line of gravely-voiced American actresses who could be leading nice quiet lives in rest homes but instead seem determined to sock it to us one more time?’
      • ‘The company really socks it to you, however, if you want more OS support - increasing the OS support to three years costs another $1,400.’
      • ‘Yes, on that show, yes, and I remember being amazed at it, that he was actually just there and he did sock it to me.’
      • ‘Me on the other hand, I was willing to sock it to them once in a while.’
      • ‘So anyway, what I was trying to say before I got all sidetracked was - sock it to me.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • sock something away

    • Put money aside as savings.

      ‘you'll need to sock away about $900 a month’
      • ‘Anyway, I was saving up some money to do a little work on my car, but instead I'm going to sock it away for a scorpion tattoo.’
      • ‘People alive today know that there are not enough people in the workforce to support a public pension; they're trying to sock it away for their retirement.’
      • ‘She once again starts socking her benefit away for retirement.’
      • ‘That would be okay if I weren't trying to sock some cash away for a new set of wheels.’
      • ‘Other money has been socked away to earn interest in city reserve funds.’
      • ‘Of course, I also don't want to spend an arm and a leg doing so since I'd like to spend that time socking money away for when I do find a decent place to buy.’
      • ‘Many are also saddled with record debt and have squandered their 401's during the years when they should be aggressively socking it away.’
      • ‘But all of the extra fees and hassles have yet to stop the vast majority of us from socking our money away in banks.’
      • ‘That has allowed the government to put aside money for regional infrastructure projects and sock away millions into a rainy-day fund that can be tapped when oil prices are low.’
      • ‘We know what newsletters he gets and how much he's socked away in the stock market.’
  • sock something in

    • Envelop or make impassable by inhospitable weather conditions.

      ‘the beach was socked in with fog’
      • ‘When the weather socked in again, the infantrymen and artillerymen were ready for the German main attack that took place on Christmas Eve.’
      • ‘Right now the weather is kind of socked in there at base camp so we are not able to fly.’
      • ‘In June the Monterey coast weather can be sunny or socked in.’
      • ‘We found out Kosovo was socked in and the weather was getting worse (go figure!’
      • ‘The message they were getting was clear: we had been on this lollipop cruise for six weeks, got socked in with weather for a seventh, and now, finally, it was time to shut up and fly the hours.’
      • ‘He thought the Alaska State Troopers might fly over, but said he didn't realize at the time that everyone else in the vicinity was socked in with snow as well, preventing any possible flight.’
      • ‘Don't let the field get socked in with early morning fog or a decreasing ceiling when you no longer have enough fuel to get to your divert base.’
      • ‘The coast was socked in with fog this morning, making an inland Southern California heat wave look like a mirage.’


Old English socc ‘light shoe’, of Germanic origin, from Latin soccus comic actor's shoe, light low-heeled slipper, from Greek sukkhos.