- 1[transitive, intransitive] to cut somebody/something with rough, heavy blows hack somebody/something + adv./prep. I hacked the dead branches off. They were hacked to death as they tried to escape. We had to hack our way through the jungle. + adv./prep. We hacked away at the bushes.
- 2[transitive] hack somebody/something + adv./prep. to kick something roughly or without control He hacked the ball away.
- 3 (computing) [intransitive, transitive] to secretly find a way of looking at and/or changing information on somebody else’s computer system without permission hack into something He hacked into the bank's computer. hack something They had hacked secret data. See related entries: Computer problems
- 4(computing) hack something to work together informally and often quickly with other people to create a program using different technologies
- 5[transitive] can/can’t hack it (informal) to be able/not able to manage in a particular situation Lots of people leave this job because they can't hack it.
- 6[intransitive] (also go hacking) (especially British English) to ride a horse for pleasure See related entries: Equine sports
- 7[intransitive] (North American English, informal) to drive a taxi Word Originverb senses 1 to 4 Old English haccian ‘cut in pieces’, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch hakken and German hacken. verb senses 5 to 6 Middle English: abbreviation of hackney ‘horse or pony of a light breed’. Extra examplesHe was hacked to death by the mob. She hacked at the hedge with the shears. The body had been hacked to pieces. The explorers had to hack their way through dense jungle. They hacked away at the dense vegetation. We hacked off the dead branches.
BrE BrE//hæk//; NAmE NAmE//hæk//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they hack
BrE BrE//hæk//; NAmE NAmE//hæk//he / she / it hacks
BrE BrE//hæks//; NAmE NAmE//hæks//past simple hacked
BrE BrE//hækt//; NAmE NAmE//hækt//past participle hacked
BrE BrE//hækt//; NAmE NAmE//hækt//-ing form hacking
BrE BrE//ˈhækɪŋ//; NAmE NAmE//ˈhækɪŋ//Computer problems, Equine sports