knee-jerk

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

knee +‎ jerk, First attested 1876, obviously derived from a figurative sense of the patellar reflex.

Adjective[edit]

knee-jerk (comparative more knee-jerk, superlative most knee-jerk)

  1. Automatic, spontaneous, easily predictable
    He gave a knee-jerk response.

Translations[edit]

Noun[edit]

knee-jerk (plural knee-jerks)

  1. A sudden reflexive movement of the leg below the knee, as a reaction to a tap to the tendon just below the patella (kneecap).

Synonyms[edit]

Translations[edit]