See also: bücket


A plastic bucket
An excavator bucket


From Middle English buket, boket, partly from Old English bucc ("bucket, pitcher"; mod. dialectal buck), equivalent to bouk +‎ -et; and partly from Anglo-Norman buket, buquet (tub; pail) (compare Norman boutchet, Norman bouquet), diminutive of Old French buc (abdomen; object with a cavity), from Vulgar Latin *būcus (compare Occitan and Catalan buc, Italian buco, buca (hole, gap)), from Frankish *būk (belly, stomach). Both the Old English and Frankish terms derive from Proto-Germanic *būkaz (belly, stomach). More at bouk.


  • enPR: bûk'ĭt, IPA(key): /ˈbʌkɪt/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ʌkɪt


bucket (plural buckets)

  1. A container made of rigid material, often with a handle, used to carry liquids or small items.
    I need a bucket to carry the water from the well.
    • 1922, Virginia Woolf, chapter 1, in Jacob's Room:
      The crab was cool and very light. But the water was thick with sand, and so, scrambling down, Jacob was about to jump, holding his bucket in front of him, when he saw, stretched entirely rigid, side by side, their faces very red, an enormous man and woman.
  2. The amount held in this container.
    The horse drank a whole bucket of water.
  3. (Britain, archaic) A unit of measure equal to four gallons.
  4. Part of a piece of machinery that resembles a bucket (container).
  5. (slang) An old vehicle that is not in good working order.
  6. (basketball, informal) The basket.
    The forward drove to the bucket.
  7. (basketball, informal) A field goal.
    We can't keep giving up easy buckets.
  8. (variation management) A mechanism for avoiding the allocation of targets in cases of mismanagement.
  9. (computing) A storage space in a hash table for every item sharing a particular key.
  10. (informal, chiefly in the plural) A large amount of liquid.
    It rained buckets yesterday.
    I was so nervous that I sweated buckets.
  11. (aviation, mechanical engineering, uncommon) A turbine blade driven by hot gas or steam.
  12. A bucket bag.
    • 1989, Susan Ludwig, Janice Steinberg, Petite Style (page 46)
      Avoid bulky styles such as duffle sacks, buckets, doctors' satchels, and hobos.
  13. The leather socket for holding the whip when driving, or for the carbine or lance when mounted.
  14. The pitcher in certain orchids.


Derived termsEdit


  • Farefare: bɔgtɛ
  • Japanese: バケツ (baketsu)


See alsoEdit


bucket (third-person singular simple present buckets, present participle bucketing, simple past and past participle bucketed)

  1. (transitive) To place inside a bucket.
  2. (transitive) To draw or lift in, or as if in, buckets.
    to bucket water
  3. (intransitive, informal) To rain heavily.
    It’s really bucketing down out there.
  4. (intransitive, informal) To travel very quickly.
    The boat is bucketing along.
  5. (computing, transitive) To categorize (data) by splitting it into buckets, or groups of related items.
    • 2002, Nicolò Cesa-Bianchi, Masayuki Numao, Rüdiger Reischuk, Algorithmic Learning Theory: 13th International Conference (page 352)
      These candidates are then bucketed into a discretized version of the space of all possible lines.
    • 2008, Hari Mohan Pandey, Design Analysis and Algorithm, page 136:
      Thus, sorting each bucket takes O(1) times. The total effort of bucketing, sorting buckets, and concotenating[sic] the sorted buckets together is O(n).
  6. (transitive) To ride (a horse) hard or mercilessly.
  7. (transitive, Britain, US, rowing) To make, or cause to make (the recovery), with a certain hurried or unskillful forward swing of the body.




Further readingEdit