Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To push or jab at, as with a finger or an arm; prod.
  • transitive v. To make (a hole or pathway, for example) by or as if by prodding, elbowing, or jabbing: I poked my way to the front of the crowd.
  • transitive v. To push; thrust: A seal poked its head out of the water.
  • transitive v. To stir (a fire) by prodding the wood or coal with a poker or stick.
  • transitive v. Slang To strike; punch.
  • intransitive v. To make thrusts or jabs, as with a stick or poker.
  • intransitive v. To pry or meddle; intrude: poking into another's business.
  • intransitive v. To search or look curiously in a desultory manner: poked about in the desk.
  • intransitive v. To proceed in a slow or lazy manner; putter: just poked along all morning.
  • intransitive v. To thrust forward; appear: The child's head poked from under the blankets.
  • n. A push, thrust, or jab.
  • n. Slang A punch or blow with the fist: a poke in the jaw.
  • n. One who moves slowly or aimlessly; a dawdler.
  • idiom poke fun at To ridicule in a mischievous manner; tease.
  • n. A projecting brim at the front of a bonnet.
  • n. A large bonnet having a projecting brim.
  • n. Chiefly Southern U.S. A sack; a bag.
  • n. Pokeweed.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To poke a fire to remove ash or promote burning.
  • v. To modify the value stored in (a memory address).
  • n. A lazy person; a dawdler.
  • n. A stupid or uninteresting person.
  • n. A device to prevent an animal from leaping or breaking through fences, consisting of a yoke with a pole inserted, pointed forward.
  • n. The storage of a value in a memory address, typically to modify the behaviour of a program or to cheat at a video game.
  • n. An ice cream cone.
  • n. Pokeweed.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A large North American herb of the genus Phytolacca (Phytolacca decandra), bearing dark purple juicy berries; -- called also garget, pigeon berry, pocan, and pokeweed. The root and berries have emetic and purgative properties, and are used in medicine. The young shoots are sometimes eaten as a substitute for asparagus, and the berries are said to be used in Europe to color wine.
  • n. A bag; a sack; a pocket.
  • n. A long, wide sleeve; -- called also poke sleeve.
  • transitive v. To thrust or push against or into with anything pointed; hence, to stir up; to excite.
  • transitive v. To thrust with the horns; to gore.
  • transitive v. To put a poke on.
  • intransitive v. To search; to feel one's way, as in the dark; to grope.
  • n. The act of poking; a thrust; a jog.
  • n. A lazy person; a dawdler; also, a stupid or uninteresting person.
  • n. A contrivance to prevent an animal from leaping or breaking through fences. It consists of a yoke with a pole inserted, pointed forward.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To thrust or push against; prod, especially with something long or pointed; prod and stir up: as, to poke a person in the ribs.
  • To push gently; jog.
  • To thrust or push.
  • To force as if by thrusting; urge; incite.
  • To put a poke on: as, to poke an ox or a pig. See poke, n., 3. [U. S.] To set the plaits of (a ruff).
  • To stoop or bend forward in walking.
  • To grope; search; feel or push one's way in or as in the dark; also, to move to and fro; dawdle.
  • n. A gentle thrust or push, especially with something long or pointed; a prod; a dig.
  • n. A poke-bonnet.
  • n. A sort of collar or ox-bow from the lower part of which a short pole projects, placed about the neck of a cow or steer in order to prevent it from jumping fences.
  • n. A lazy person; a dawdler.
  • n. A pocket; a pouch; a bag; a sack.
  • n. A large, wide, bag-like sleeve formerly in vogue. Same as poke-sleeve.
  • n. A bag or bladder filled with air and used by fishermen as a buoy.
  • n. The stomach or swimming-bladder of a fish.
  • n. A cock, as of hay.
  • n. A customary unit of weight for wool, 20 hundredweight.
  • n. Same as pokeweed or garget.
  • n. The small green heron more fully called shitepoke.
  • n. Scrofula.
  • In cricket, to bat in a cramped, over-cautious style.
  • n. In cricket: A cramped, timid batting stroke.
  • n. A batsman who plays in a cramped, over-cautious style.

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

  • n. someone who takes more time than necessary; someone who lags behind
  • n. a sharp hand gesture (resembling a blow)
  • v. poke or thrust abruptly
  • v. hit hard with the hand, fist, or some heavy instrument
  • v. search or inquire in a meddlesome way
  • n. tall coarse perennial American herb having small white flowers followed by blackish-red berries on long drooping racemes; young fleshy stems are edible; berries and root are poisonous
  • v. make a hole by poking
  • n. (boxing) a blow with the fist
  • v. stir by poking
  • n. a bag made of paper or plastic for holding customer's purchases

Etymologies

Middle English poken, probably from Middle Low German or Middle Dutch.
From poke1.
Middle English, probably from Old North French; see pocket.
Short for dialectal pocan, of Virginia Algonquian origin; akin to puccoon.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Perhaps from Middle Dutch poken OR German poken (both from Proto-Germanic *puk), perhaps imitative. (Wiktionary)
From Anglo-Norman poke, whence pocket (Wiktionary)
From pokeweed, by shortening (Wiktionary)

Examples

Comments

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  • An ice cream cone (Belfast)

    July 27, 2011

  • Interesting, 'oucho, as I see from your link that poke is also considered as 'local grind'.

    July 31, 2009

  • Poke is also a Hawaiian side dish.

    July 31, 2009

  • And through Facebook. I never said I liked it! ;-)

    December 14, 2007

  • It's an...acquired taste, U. Mostly acquired through poverty.

    December 14, 2007

  • No wonder I'm never hungry.

    December 14, 2007

  • If only I'd known.

    December 14, 2007

  • Context is everything, eh reesetee?

    December 14, 2007

  • Aaaah! So when you poke someone on Facebook, you're actually giving them some of your tall coarse perennial American herb having small white flowers followed by blackish-red berries on long drooping racemes! Now I get it!

    December 13, 2007

  • Actually, WeirdNET is correct on this one, at least if you're from the Southern US where poke (a.k.a. poke salad) is gathered and consumed as a green.

    In Alaska, a small sack of gold is referred to as a poke, clearly having taken the name from the bag itself.

    December 13, 2007

  • "He bought a poke of chips in a shop near Charing Cross and walked, eating them, up Bath Street." - 'Lanark', Alasdair Gray.

    The meaning here appears to be bag.

    December 4, 2007

  • A WeirdNET special :-)

    December 4, 2007