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Definition wick

Etymology 1

From Middle English weke, wicke (“wick”); from Old English wēoce (“wick”); from Proto-Germanic *wikǭ (“turn, succession”); from Proto-Indo-European *weyk (“to bend, wind”). Related to Proto-Germanic *wīkaną (“to bend, yield”). Compare Swedish vek, English week, of the same origin.


wick (plural wicks)

  1. A bundle, twist, braid, or woven strip of cord, fabric, fibre/fiber, or other porous material in a candle, oil lamp, kerosene heater, or the like, that draws up liquid fuel, such as melted tallow, wax, or the oil, delivering it to the base of the flame for conversion to gases and burning; any other length of material burned for illumination in small successive portions.
  2. Any piece of porous material that conveys liquid by capillary action, such as a strip of gauze placed in a wound to serve as a drain.
  3. (curling) A narrow opening in the field, flanked by other players' stones.
  4. (curling) A shot where the played stone touches a stationary stone just enough that the played stone changes direction.
  5. (slang, euphemistic) The penis.

wick (third-person singular simple present wicks, present participle wicking, simple past and past participle wicked)

  1. (transitive) To convey or draw off (liquid) by capillary action.
  2. (intransitive, of a liquid) To traverse (i.e. be conveyed by capillary action) through a wick or other porous material, as water through a sponge. Usually followed by through.
  3. (curling) To strike (a stone) obliquely; to strike (a stationary stone) just enough that the played stone changes direction.

Etymology 2

From earlier Middle English wik, wich (“village, hamlet, town”); from Old English wīc (“dwelling place, abode”); Germanic borrowing from Latin vīcus (“village, estate”) (see vicinity). It came to mean “dairy farm” around the 13th or 14th century; for instance, Gatwick (“Goat-farm”). Cognates include Old High German wîch, wih (“village”), German Weichbild (“municipal area”), Dutch wijk (“quarter, district”), Old Frisian wik, Old Saxon wic (“village”), as well as Ancient Greek οἶκος (oîkos, “house”), whence English eco-.


wick (plural wicks)

  1. (archaic) A village; hamlet; castle; dwelling; street; creek; bay; harbour; a place of work, jurisdiction, or exercise of authority.
  2. (Britain, dialectal, chiefly East Anglia and Essex) A farm, especially a dairy farm.

Etymology 3

From Old English cwic (“alive”); similar to an archaic meaning of quick (“endowed with life; having a high degree of vigor, energy, or activity”), and quicken (“come to life”).


wick (comparative wicker or more wick, superlative wickest or most wick)

  1. (Britain, dialectal, chiefly Yorkshire) Alive; lively; full of life; active; bustling; nimble; quick.


  1. (Britain, dialectal, chiefly Yorkshire) Liveliness; life.
  2. (Britain, dialectal, chiefly Yorkshire) The growing part of a plant nearest to the roots.
  3. (Britain, dialectal, chiefly Yorkshire) A maggot.

Etymology 4

From Old Norse vik.


wick (plural wicks)

  1. (now dialectal) A corner of the mouth or eye.

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