Definitions

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

  • transitive v. Archaic To punish with blows; thrash; beat.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To singe.
  • v. To lash.
  • v. To strike hard.
  • n. A swinging blow.
  • n. Power; sway; influence.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The sweep of anything in motion; a swinging blow; a swing.
  • n. Power; sway; influence.
  • v. See singe.
  • transitive v. To beat soundly; to whip; to chastise; to punish.
  • transitive v. To move as a lash; to lash.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To beat; strike; whip; of persons, to chastise; punish.
  • To move, as a lash; lash; swing.
  • To forge; weld together, as by beating with a hammer; swage.
  • To singe.
  • n. A lashing movement; a lash.
  • n. Sway; control.
  • n. A singe.
  • n. The portion of a flail which falls upon the grain.

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

  • v. burn superficially or lightly

Etymologies

Middle English swengen, to shake, dash, from Old English swengan.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old English swengan: to shatter to Middle English swenge (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • I was afraid lest my mother should swinge me on account of the apple, so for fear of her I went with my brother outside the city and stayed there till evening closed in upon us; and indeed I am in fear of her; and now by Allah, O my father, say nothing to her of this or it may add to her ailment!

    The Book of The Thousand Nights And A Night

  • Bolingbroke is not active enough; but I hope to swinge him.

    The Journal to Stella

  • At its frequent rise and fall you would say that they swinge and belabour me after the manner of a probationer, posed and put to a peremptory trial in the examination of his sufficiency for the discharge of the learned duty of a graduate in some eminent degree in the college of the Sorbonists.

    Five books of the lives, heroic deeds and sayings of Gargantua and his son Pantagruel

  • While they were in that posture, in came a huge Sandal, with a pitchfork in his hand, who used to baste, rib-roast, swaddle, and swinge them well-favouredly, as they said, and in truth treated them after a fashion.

    Five books of the lives, heroic deeds and sayings of Gargantua and his son Pantagruel

  • That is the neetive misure of the Oirish bards, an 'is iminiutly adapted to rendher the Homeric swinge.

    The Lady of the Ice A Novel

  • "The Secretary promises me to swinge him," he wrote in 1711; "I must make that rogue an example for a warning to others."

    The Tatler, Volume 1, 1899

  • As for the literary pundits, the high priests of the Temple of Letters, it is interesting and helpful occasionally for an acolyte to swinge them a good hard one with an incense-burner, and cut and run, for a change, to something outside the rubrics.

    Old Junk

  • There was I, and Little John Doit of Staffordshire and black George Barnes and Francis Pickbone, and Will Squele a Cotswold man; you had not four such swinge-bucklers in all the inns of court again: and, I may say to you, we knew where the bona-robas were, and had the best of them all at commandment.

    Act III. Scene II. The Second Part of King Henry the Fourth

  • It hurled Dyckman against and along the big table, just as he put home one magnificent, majestic, mellifluous swinge with all his body in it.

    We Can't Have Everything

  • Page view page image: flesh of this animal is highly prized by the nativs who swinge the hair off and then roste the flesh on sticks before the fire.

    Original journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, 1804-1806

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