from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To make ready; prepare.
  • v. To dispose; be set in order for; be destined or intended for.
  • v. To set open; open.
  • v. To draw (stitches etc.) tight.
  • v. To hit, strike, especially with a cane or whip.
  • v. To crack (a whip).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • v. To yerk.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To make ready; prepare.
  • To dispose.
  • To set open; open.
  • n. A variant of yerk.


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English ȝarken, ȝerken, from Old English ġearcian ("to prepare, make ready, procure, furnish, supply"), from Proto-Germanic *garwakōnan (“to prepare”), from Proto-Indo-European *gʰrebʰ-, *gʰerbʰ- (“to grab, take, rake”), equivalent to yare +‎ -k. Related to Old English ġearc ("ready, active, quick"), Old English ġearu ("prepared, ready, equipped, complete, finished, yare"). More at yare.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Origin uncertain, probably originally imitative; compare jerk etc.



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  • The ballet of the whipper of late dayes here in England, was but a scoffe in comparison of him. All the colliers of Romford, who hold their corporation by yarking the blind beare at Paris garden, were but bunglers to him, he had the right agility of the lash, there were none of them could made the cord come aloft with a twange halfe like him.

    - Thomas Nashe, The Unfortunate Traveller, 1594

    April 14, 2010

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