\ ˈēk How to pronounce eke (audio) \

Definition of eke

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: also


eked; eking

Definition of eke (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 archaic : increase, lengthen
2 : to get with great difficulty usually used with out eke out a living

Examples of eke in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Prices on Apple products have generally crept as the company tries to eke more money out of a relatively stagnant user base. Mike Murphy, Quartz, "The stand for Apple’s new computer monitor costs as much as an iPhone," 3 June 2019 Total factor productivity, which measures how efficiently firms eke more output from their capital and labor, grew 2% to 5% a year before the crisis, but only 0.5% to 2% since. Greg Ip, WSJ, "The Global Boom, Barely Begun, May Be Over," 23 Jan. 2019 To try to eke some life out of their systems, Surface Pro 4 users were going to extreme lengths. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Microsoft can’t fix “flickergate” Surface Pro 4s with software, so it’s replacing them," 11 May 2018 Moon — a man with deep emotional and intellectual connections to the North — to eke the goods out of Kim. Charlie Campbell / Beijing, Time, "It's Time to Give the Trump Administration Some Credit for North Korea Progress," 7 Mar. 2018 North Korean founder, Kim Sung Il, father to Kim Jong Il and grandfather to the current Kim, expertly played his estranged Chinese and Soviet benefactors off each other for decades to eke concessions. Charlie Campbell / Beijing, Time, "Self-Championed Dealmaker Donald Trump Faces the Ultimate Test Meeting Kim Jong Un," 9 Mar. 2018 In film, the few black stories that eke through are set firmly in reality — though not always in the present, and often with the struggle of slaves, their immediate descendants, or their distant successors. Michelle Ofiwe, Esquire, "How Donald Glover Changed the Way Black Stories Are Told on Television," 10 Nov. 2016 The dikes are not the only thing in a state of deterioration — forgotten Florida are inland places like this, where people eke out a living, or simply a meal, by fishing and selling goods from a truck. Anne Tschida, miamiherald, "If you’re interested in the art of here & now, you need to see this show," 6 July 2017 To eke out a profit, Valerian needs to gross at least $400 million. Chris Lee, MSNBC Newsweek, "Not a Marvel Movie: 'Valerian' Director on His Epic and Expensive Sci-Fi Adapted From a Graphic Novel," 5 July 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'eke.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of eke


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for eke


Middle English, from Old English ēac; akin to Old High German ouh also, Latin aut or, Greek au again


Middle English, from Old English īecan, ēcan; akin to Old High German ouhhōn to add, Latin augēre to increase, Greek auxein

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The first known use of eke was before the 12th century

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with eke

Nglish: Translation of eke for Spanish Speakers

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characterized by aphorism

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