—n. 1. one of the long, slender feathers on the neck or saddle of certain birds, as the domestic rooster, much used in making artificial flies for anglers.
2. the neck plumage of a male bird, as the domestic rooster.
3. hackles, a. the erectile hair on the back of an animal's neck: At the sound of footsteps, the dog raised her hackles. b. anger, esp. when aroused in a challenging or challenged manner: with one's hackles up. 4. Angling. a. the legs of an artificial fly made with feathers from the neck or saddle of a rooster or other such bird. See diag. under fly2.
b. See hackle fly. 5. a comb for dressing flax or hemp.
6. raise one's hackles, to arouse one's anger: Such officiousness always raises my hackles.
—v.t. 1. Angling.to equip with a hackle.
2. to comb, as flax or hemp. Also,hatchel,heckle(for defs. 5, 8).
Pronunciation: (hak'ul),[key] —v.t.,-led, -ling. to cut roughly; hack; mangle.