penknife

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pen·knife

 (pĕn′nīf′)
n.
A small pocketknife.

[So called because it was originally used for cutting quill pens.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

penknife

(ˈpɛnˌnaɪf)
n, pl -knives
(Tools) a small knife with one or more blades that fold into the handle; pocketknife
[C15: so called because it was originally used for making and repairing quill pens]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014

pen•knife

(ˈpɛnˌnaɪf)

n., pl. -knives.
a small pocketknife, formerly one used for making and sharpening quill pens.
[1400–50]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.penknife - a small pocketknifepenknife - a small pocketknife; originally used to cut quill pens
pocket knife, pocketknife - a knife with a blade that folds into the handle; suitable for carrying in the pocket
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
Translations
kapesní nůž
lommekniv
kynäveitsi
džepni nož
ペンナイフ
펜나이프
žepni nož
fickkniv
มีดเล็กที่พับได้
dao nhíp

penknife

[ˈpennaɪf] N (penknives (pl)) → navaja f, cortaplumas m inv
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005

penknife

[ˈpɛnnaɪf] ncanif m
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005

penknife

nTaschenmesser nt
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007

penknife

[ˈpɛnˌnaɪf] n (-knives (pl)) [ˈpɛnˌnaɪvz]temperino
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995

penknife

مِطْوَاةٌ kapesní nůž lommekniv Taschenmesser σουγιάς navaja kynäveitsi canif džepni nož temperino ペンナイフ 펜나이프 zakmes lommekniv scyzoryk canivete перочинный нож fickkniv มีดเล็กที่พับได้ çakı dao nhíp 小刀
Multilingual Translator © HarperCollins Publishers 2009
References in classic literature ?
They sat down to a table covered with an oilcloth cut in slits by penknives.
Some wore penknives clasped on their kinky locks for safety.
But it's a fact that during the 1970s, a popular Tyneside street game involved throwing penknives.
By the 1580s, Sheffield penknives were being recommended as the first choice for teacher in "The Writing School-Master".
"Cutting what?" "Wood and things." Sounds fine to me until his dad explains when he was young he and his friends all had penknives and did stupid things with them.
As far as I am aware (which I am) they neither carry corkscrews, penknives nor a tin opener and naturally are not issued with Samurai swords or indeed anything similar.
Robert also takes a closer look at the mother of all penknives, the classic Swiss Army knife.
Summary: Scouts may find themselves not so well-prepared from now on after being all but banned from carrying penknives.
Have we all forgotten the uses we used to put penknives to?