knock on wood

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  • (RP): IPA(key): /ˈnɒk ɒn ˈwʊd/
  • (US): IPA(key): /ˈnɑk ɑn ˈwʊd/, /ˈnɔk ɔn ˈwʊd/, /ˈnak ɑn ˈwʊd/
  • (file)


knock on wood (third-person singular simple present knocks on wood, present participle knocking on wood, simple past and past participle knocked on wood)

  1. (idiomatic, US) To take a customary action to ward off some misfortune that is believed to be attracted by a presumptuous statement.
  2. (idiomatic, US) A self-directive to undertake the customary action to ward off bad luck.
    I do a lot of walking, and I have never had any knee problems yet, knock on wood.

See also[edit]