Meaning of “hook” in the English Dictionary

"hook" in English

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hooknoun [ C ]

uk /hʊk/ us /hʊk/

hook noun [ C ] (SONG)

a repeated part of a song or piece of music that is particularly pleasing and easy to remember:

It has to be a great song, with a great hook, great lyrics, and a great melody.


uk /hʊk/ us /hʊk/

hook verb (FASTEN)

[ T ] to fasten something with a hook, hang something on a hook, or catch something with a hook:

He hooked the trailer (= joined it with a hook) to his car.
How many salmon did you hook (= catch) this afternoon?
She hooked the shoe (= lifted it with a hook) out of the water.

hook verb (HAVE SEX)

[ I ] US informal to have sex for money

(Definition of “hook” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"hook" in American English

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hooknoun [ C ]

us /hʊk/

a curved device used for catching hold of something or for hanging something on:

Hang your coat on one of the hooks in the hall.
I need to change the hook on my fishing line.

hookverb [ T ]

us /hʊk/

to use something like a hook, or to put something so that it is supported at one end and hangs:

She hooked her arm through his.
He hooked his cane over the back of the chair.

To hook fish means to catch them on hooks:

We hooked some bass.

Phrasal verb(s)

(Definition of “hook” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"hook" in Business English

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hooknoun [ C ]

uk /hʊk/ us informal

MARKETING something that is used to attract customers' attention, and encourage them to buy a product or service:

Special deals on bestsellers are used as hooks to sell volumes from publishers' back catalogues.
be on the hook (for sth/to do sth) US informal

to owe money or be legally responsible for something:

The cleanup plan called for the companies, which are on the hook for cleanup costs, to dredge contaminated sediments from the river.
If the investment company fails, they are on the hook to pay the loan.
off the hook

having escaped from a difficult situation or punishment:

be/get off the hook Don't think you're off the hook on taxes just because you were paid in cash.
get/let sb off the hook The minister was last night under fire for letting the big banks off the hook.

hookverb [ T ]

uk /hʊk/ us

MARKETING to attract someone's attention or encourage them to buy a product or service:

Financial marketers know that money-off deals hook customers and keep them loyal.
Once people have tried this product, they will be hooked for life.

IT to connect a machine to a power supply, or to another machine:

hook sth to sth The high-speed digital connector is used to hook all kinds of devices to your computer.

(Definition of “hook” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)