Word of the Day

ilk

audio pronunciation
March 05, 2015
noun
\ILK\
Definition
: sort, kind
Examples
The hole beneath the stairs of the cabin's porch allows in squirrels, woodchucks, and other creatures of that ilk.

"In many parts of the world, anyone who will ever buy a smartphone probably has done so, and now we're on to the steady business of buying a new one only when we break, lose, or need to replace our old phones. When analysts discuss growth predictions for cell phones and their ilk, they signal nothing but caution." — Lindsey Turrentine, CNET, February 6, 2015
Subscribe
Get the Word of the Day direct to your inbox — subscribe today!
Did You Know?
The Old English pronoun ilca is the predecessor of the modern noun ilk, but by way of a pronoun ilk that does not exist in most dialects of modern English. That ilk is synonymous with same, and persists in Scots where it's used in the phrase "of that ilk," meaning "of the same place, territorial designation, or name." It is used chiefly in reference to the names of land-owning families and their eponymous estates, as in "the Guthries of that ilk," which means "the Guthries of Guthrie." Centuries ago a misunderstanding arose concerning the Scots phrase: it was interpreted as meaning "of that kind or sort," a usage that found its way into modern English. Ilk has been established in English with its current meaning and part of speech since the late 18th century.

Name That Synonym: Unscramble the letters to create a synonym of ilk: EDYIKN. The answer is …
More Words of the Day
Visit our archives to see previous selections.
Podcast
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears