elk

\ \ [OE] The Indo-European base *ol-, *elproduced a number of names for deerlike animals – Greek élaphosstag’, for example, and Welsh elainhind’, not to mention English eland. In its Germanic descendants, two main lines of development are evident: its extensions *olk- and *elk- produced respectively Germanic *algiz (whence Old Norse elgr) and Germanic *elkho(n)- (whence Old English colh). It is not actually entirely clear which of these two is represented by modern English elk, which is first unequivocally recorded in the late 15th century.
\ \ It is formally possible that it could be a survival of the Old English word, with its final /kh/ sound changed to /k/, but the long gap in the written record between Old English eolh and Middle English elk suggests that it could be an Old Norse borrowing.
\ \ Cf.ELAND

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

Synonyms:
, (Cervus alces or Alces molchis)


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ełk — Ełk …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • elk — (ĕlk) n. pl. elk or elks 1) A large reddish brown or grayish deer (Cervus canadensis) of western North America, having long, branching antlers in the male. The elk is sometimes considered a subspecies of the closely related red deer. Also called… …   Word Histories

  • elk — /elk/, n., pl. elks, (esp. collectively) elk for 1, 2. 1. Also called European elk. the moose, Alces alces. 2. Also called American elk, wapiti. a large North American deer, Cervus canadensis, the male of which has large, spreading antlers. 3. a… …   Universalium

  • elk — ([e^]lk), n. [Icel. elgr; akin to Sw. elg, AS. eolh, OHG. elaho, MHG. elch, cf. L. alces; perh. akin to E. eland.] (Zo[ o]l.) A large deer, of several species. The European elk {Alces alces} (formerly {Alces machlis} or {Cervus alces}) is closely …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • elk — /ɛlk / (say elk) noun (plural elks, elk) 1. the largest existing deer, Alces alces, having a large head with broad, overhanging muzzle, and large palmate antlers in the male, found in moist wooded areas across the Northern Hemisphere. Compare… …   Australian English dictionary

  • elk — [elk] n plural elk [: Old English; Origin: eolh] 1.) BrE a very large brown North American, European, and Asian animal with wide flat horns American Equivalent: moose 2.) AmE a large North American ↑deer …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • elk — [elk] n. pl. elk or elks [ME, irreg. development (with k for ch) < OE eolh, akin to Ger elch, ON elgr < Gmc base * alchis < IE base * el , stag, hart > Welsh elain, doe, Lith élnis, Gr elaphos, deer] 1. MOOSE: the common term in… …   English World dictionary

  • elk — elk, elke elke, n. (Zo[ o]l.) The European wild or whistling swan ({Cygnus ferus}). [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Elk — ([e^]lk), prop. n. a member of the fraternal organization named Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, supporting various services to their communities. [PJC] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Elk [2] — Elk, 1) Grafschaft im Staate Pennsylvanien (Nordamerika), 37 QM.; Flüsse: Clarion River u. die Quellenarme des Sinnemahoning Creek; Boden gebirgig (namentlich im Süden Elk Mountain) u. waldig; Hauptproduct: Bauholz, dann etwas Mais u. Hafer,… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • elk — [ elk ] noun count a type of large DEER that lives in North America, Europe, and Asia: MOOSE …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

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