choke [chohk] SynonymsExamplesWord Origin See more synonyms for choke on verb (used with object), choked, chok·ing.

  1. to stop the breath of by squeezing or obstructing the windpipe; strangle; stifle.
  2. to stop by or as if by strangling or stifling: The sudden wind choked his words.
  3. to stop by filling; obstruct; clog: Grease choked the drain.
  4. to suppress (a feeling, emotion, etc.) (often followed by back or down): I managed to choke back my tears.
  5. to fill chock-full: The storeroom was choked with furniture.
  6. to seize (a log, felled tree, etc.) with a chain, cable, or the like, so as to facilitate removal.
  7. to enrich the fuel mixture of (an internal-combustion engine) by diminishing the air supply to the carburetor.
  8. Sports. to grip (a bat, racket, or the like) farther than usual from the end of the handle; shorten one’s grip on (often followed by up).

verb (used without object), choked, chok·ing.

  1. to suffer from or as from strangling or suffocating: He choked on a piece of food.
  2. to become obstructed, clogged, or otherwise stopped: The words choked in her throat.


  1. the act or sound of choking.
  2. a mechanism by which the air supply to the carburetor of an internal-combustion engine can be diminished or stopped.
  3. Machinery. any mechanism that, by blocking a passage, regulates the flow of air, gas, etc.
  4. Electricity. choke coil.
  5. a narrowed part, as in a chokebore.
  6. the bristly upper portion of the receptacle of the artichoke.

Verb Phrases

  1. choke off, to stop or obstruct by or as by choking: to choke off a nation’s fuel supply.
  2. choke up,
    1. to become or cause to become speechless, as from the effect of emotion or stress: She choked up over the sadness of the tale.
    2. to become too tense or nervous to perform well: Our team began to choke up in the last inning.

Origin of choke 1150–1200; Middle English choken, cheken, variant of achoken, acheken, Old English ācēocian to suffocate; akin to Old Norse kōk gulletRelated formschoke·a·ble, adjectivein·ter·choke, verb (used with object), in·ter·choked, in·ter·chok·ing.un·choke·a·ble, adjectiveun·choked, adjectiveSynonyms for choke See more synonyms for on 3. block, dam, plug. Related Words for choke clog, congest, drown, suffocate, kill, gag, gasp, strangle, stifle, fill, obstruct, close, check, overpower, suppress, noose, occlude, asphyxiate, dam, stop Examples from the Web for choke Contemporary Examples of choke

  • He then began to choke her, and as she lost consciousness it must have seemed that his might be the last face she would ever see.

    The Girls Who Were Taken Before Hannah Graham

    Michael Daly

    September 30, 2014

  • According to their friend, producer/filmmaker Choke No Joke, it was over a mutual flame.

    Did Beyoncé Just Accuse Jay Z of Cheating?

    Marlow Stern

    July 2, 2014

  • Shiomura continued to speak even though she had to choke back tears at one point.

    Japanese Parliament to Women: Breed, Don’t Lead

    Jake Adelstein, Angela Erika Kubo

    June 22, 2014

  • A new Kimberley Process working group to monitor CAR might help focus attention on the guilty and choke the diamond flow.

    The Curse of CAR: Warlords, Blood Diamonds, and Dead Elephants

    Christopher Day

    May 25, 2014

  • Banks must then ‘choke off’ those customers’ access to financial services, shutting down their accounts.

    The Banks’ War on Porn Stars

    Richard Abowitz, Marlow Stern

    May 7, 2014

  • Historical Examples of choke

  • The touch, the choke in her voice, brought about Viviette’s downfall.


    William J. Locke

  • I am weary of the earth-damps; they burden me; they choke me!

    Other Tales and Sketches

    Nathaniel Hawthorne

  • Cornelius was in fits of laughter, which he scarcely tried to choke.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • If we don’t do something, I’ll go in and choke the truth out of that old reprobate.

    The Inn at the Red Oak

    Latta Griswold

  • I have been running, and the words seem to choke me as I speak.

    Henry Dunbar

    M. E. Braddon

  • British Dictionary definitions for choke choke verb

    1. (tr) to hinder or stop the breathing of (a person or animal), esp by constricting the windpipe or by asphyxiation
    2. (intr) to have trouble or fail in breathing, swallowing, or speaking
    3. (tr) to block or clog up (a passage, pipe, street, etc)
    4. (tr) to retard the growth or action ofthe weeds are choking my plants
    5. (tr) to suppress (emotion)she choked her anger
    6. (intr) slang to die
    7. (tr) to enrich the petrol-air mixture by reducing the air supply to (a carburettor, petrol engine, etc)
    8. (intr) (esp in sport) to be seized with tension and fail to perform well


    1. the act or sound of choking
    2. a device in the carburettor of a petrol engine that enriches the petrol-air mixture by reducing the air supply
    3. any constriction or mechanism for reducing the flow of a fluid in a pipe, tube, etc
    4. Also called: choke coil electronics an inductor having a relatively high impedance, used to prevent the passage of high frequencies or to smooth the output of a rectifier
    5. the inedible centre of the head of an artichoke

    See also choke back, choke up Derived Formschokeable, adjectiveWord Origin for choke Old English ācēocian, of Germanic origin; related to cheek Word Origin and History for choke v.

    c.1300, transitive, “to strangle;” late 14c., “to make to suffocate,” of persons as well as swallowed objects, a shortening of acheken (c.1200), from Old English aceocian “to choke, suffocate” (with intensive a-), probably from root of ceoke “jaw, cheek” (see cheek (n.)).

    Intransitive sense from c.1400. Meaning “gasp for breath” is from early 15c. Figurative use from c.1400, in early use often with reference to weeds stifling the growth of useful plants (a Biblical image). Meaning “to fail in the clutch” is attested by 1976, American English. Related: Choked; choking. Choke-cherry (1785) supposedly so called for its astringent qualities. Johnson also has choke-pear “Any aspersion or sarcasm, by which another person is put to silence.” Choked up “overcome with emotion and unable to speak” is attested by 1896. The baseball batting sense is by 1907.


    1560s, “quinsy,” from choke (v.). Meaning “action of choking” is from 1839. Meaning “valve which controls air to a carburetor” first recorded 1926.

    choke in Medicine choke [chōk] v.

    1. To interfere with the respiration of by compression or obstruction of the larynx or trachea.
    2. To have difficulty in breathing, swallowing, or speaking.

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