Meaning of KNIFE in English
I. knife 1 S3 W3 /naɪf/ BrE AmE noun ( plural knives /naɪvz/) [countable]
[ Language: Old English ; Origin: cnif ]
1 . a metal blade fixed into a handle, used for cutting or as a weapon ⇨ scalpel :
a knife and fork
Some young people are carrying knives to defend themselves.
a kitchen knife
Use a sharp knife to cut the melon into sections.
⇨ ↑ carving knife , ↑ flick knife , ↑ palette knife , ↑ paper knife , ↑ penknife
2 . the knives are out (for somebody) informal used to say that people are being extremely unfriendly in criticizing someone:
The knives are out for the vice president.
3 . twist/turn the knife (in the wound) to say something that makes someone more upset about a subject they are already unhappy about
4 . stick/put etc the knife in/into someone British English informal to dislike someone and be very unfriendly towards them
5 . under the knife informal having a medical operation
6 . you could cut the atmosphere/air/tension with a knife used to say that you felt the people in a room were angry with each other
7 . like a (hot) knife through butter informal used to say that something happens or is done very easily, without any problems
• • •
■ ADJECTIVES/NOUN + knife
Be careful using that knife - it's very sharp.
▪ blunt (=not sharp)
The knife was so blunt it wouldn't cut anything.
▪ a bread knife
Will you pass me the bread knife?
▪ a kitchen knife (=a long knife used for cutting vegetables etc)
Every chef has his own set of kitchen knives.
▪ a carving knife (=for cutting meat)
Dad always used to sharpen the carving knife.
▪ a pocket knife (=a small knife that you carry with you)
He was armed with nothing but a pocket knife.
■ knife + NOUN
▪ a knife wound
She died from a single knife wound.
▪ a knife attack
He was sentenced to 9 years in prison for a knife attack.
▪ knife crime (=crimes in which people are attacked with knives)
Knife crime is on the increase.
▪ the blade of a knife
The blade of the knife cut cleanly through the rope.
▪ the handle of a knife
His hand reached down to the handle of his knife.
▪ carry a knife (=have it with you)
The campaign warns young people about the dangers of carrying knives.
▪ be armed with a knife (=have it with you)
One of the men was armed with a knife.
▪ hold a knife
In his hand, he held a long knife.
▪ threaten somebody with a knife
The girls were threatened with a knife.
▪ brandish/wield a knife (=wave it around in a threatening way)
A man brandishing a knife burst into the room.
▪ sharpen a knife (=make it sharper)
What's the best way to sharpen a knife?
II. knife 2 BrE AmE verb [transitive]
to put a knife into someone’s body SYN stab :
She had been knifed to death.
—knifing noun [countable]
Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English. Longman - Словарь современного английского языка. 2012