K The eleventh letter and the eighth consonant in the order of the English alphabet. It is borrowed from the Greeks, being the same character as the Greek kappa, answering to the Oriental koph. It is called a pure mute, because it has no sound, but merely gives a certain peculiar abruptness to the sound which precedes of follows it, according as it is final or initial. It is related to g, as in gold, and to ng, as in sing, k being the palatal mute, g the palatal sonant, and ng the palatal nasal, of the same general position of the organs of speech. It is usually denominated a guttural, but is more properly a palatal. Before all the vowels, it has one invariable sound, corresponding with that of c before a, o, and u, as in keel, ken. In many words of one syllable, it is used after c, as in crack, check, deck, being necessary to exhibit a correct pronunciation in the derivatives, cracked, checked, decked, cracking: for without it, c, before the vowels e and i, would be sounded like s. Formerly, k was added to c in certain words of Latin origin, as in musick, publick, republick: but in modern practice, it is very properly omitted, being entirely superfluous, and this omission is the more proper as k is never written in the derivatives, musical, publication, republican. — Webster, 1882
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Kansas – The state.
keg – A small cask, or barrel, differing from the barrel only in size, and containing a few gallons, but not of any definite capacity.
Kentucky – The state.
kettle – A vessel of iron, or other metal, with a wide mouth, usually without a cover, used for heating and boiling water or other liquor.
kindle – To take fire; to begin to burn with flame.
kindling – The materials for causing flame, or commencing a fire.
Kitty – Feline belonging to the Ingalls family in Dakota Territory, purchased for fifty cents from Amos Whiting.
knife – An instrument usually consisting of a thin blade of steel, having a sharp edge for cutting, fastened to a handle, but of many different forms and names for different uses in household economy and the various trades, &c.; as, table-knife, drawing-knife, putty-knife, pallet-knife, pocket-knife, pen-knife, chopping-knife, and others.
knit – To form, as a textile fabric, by the interlooping of yarn or thread in a series of connected knots, by means of needles, either by hand or by machinery; as, to knit stockings.
knoll – The top or crown of a hill; especially, in a little round hill or mount; a small elevation of earth.
knothole – A knot is a joint in the stem of a plant; a protuberance occasioned by the outgrowth of a branch; a hard place in wood where the outgrowth of a branch runs transverse to the general grain of the wood.