Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To listen attentively.
  • idiom hark back To return to a previous point, as in a narrative.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To listen attentively; often used in the imperative.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To listen; to hearken.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To hear; listen to.
  • To listen; harken: now chiefly used in the imperative, as an incitement to attention or action, as in hunting. See phrases below.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. listen; used mostly in the imperative

Etymologies

Middle English harken, herken, from Old English *heorcian.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English herken, herkien, from Old English *hercian, *heorcian, *hiercian, ultimately from Proto-Germanic *hauzijanan (“to hear”) + formative/intensive -k. Cognate with Scots herk ("to hark"), North Frisian harke ("to hark"), West Frisian harkje ("to listen"), obsolete Dutch horken ("to hark, listen to"), Middle Low German horken ("to hark"), German horchen ("to hark, harken to"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Traditional communities, that the word hark backs to, were people with weak ties.

    Deeplinking

  • 'See, see, mother; hark, that is the cry of the little bird, the hawk has got it.'

    Penshurst Castle In the Days of Sir Philip Sidney

  • Jackson's comment and the group's name hark back to the nation's revolutionary beginnings in its tax revolt against England, and the Fourth of July holiday this weekend has become a rallying cry for supporters who plan a rally in San Antonio, a fair in suburban Atlanta and more.

    Yahoo! News: Top Stories

  • CROWLEY: And I kind of hark back to something that someone close to Michael Bloomberg once said, which was he didn't get this wealthy wasting his money.

    CNN Transcript Dec 31, 2007

  • "Today's artists are only interested in three or four songs on the internet, so people do kind of hark back to the 70s, 80s and early 90s, when albums were kind of seminal works," he explained.

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  • Sarah Palin), the audience at the first Lincoln-Douglas debate erupted with cries like "hark" and "humbug" and "hit him again."

    Stix Blog

  • Winds and seismic and tectonic disruptions have left their mark in tortuous folds and uplifts, deep gashes, and conical incrustations that hark back far before the age of human folly.

    Pakistan’s Fatal Shore

  • Even Brits do not hark as closely when the questioning shifts to the much-less-known owners of the Daily Mail, Daily Mirror or other down-market papers.

    A British Watergate?

  • Armin Smailovic for The Wall Street Journal What's of particular concern to German political and business leaders is that many of those leaving hark from the cutting-edge sectors that Germany views as crucial to safeguarding its export advantage, such as nanotechnology, electrical engineering, biotechnology and clean technologies.

    Germany's Brain Drain

  • What's of particular concern to German political and business leaders is that many of those leaving hark from the cutting-edge sectors that Germany views as crucial to safeguarding its export advantage, such as nanotechnology, electrical engineering, biotechnology and clean technologies.

    Exodus of Skilled Labor Saps Germany

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  • Hark tintinnabulation approaches...bird N D air, bird N D air!

    July 26, 2010