lurk

verb
\ ˈlərk \
lurked; lurking; lurks

Definition of lurk

intransitive verb

1a : to lie in wait in a place of concealment especially for an evil purpose someone out there lurking in the shadows
b : to move furtively or inconspicuously shall I lurk about this country like a thief?— Henry Fielding
c : to persist in staying the excitement of the first act still lurking in the air— Richard Fletcher Something about the smile lurking on Malfoy's face during the next week made Harry, Ron, and Hermione very nervous.— J. K. Rowling
2a : to be concealed but capable of being discovered specifically : to constitute a latent threat What evil lurks in the hearts of men?
b : to lie hidden Malaria lurked in the marshes.
3 : to read messages without contributing on an Internet discussion forum (see forum sense 1c) (such as a newsgroup or chat room) or social media platform (such as Facebook or Twitter) You can tweet as much as you want or lurk without comment, though consistent tweeting and audience engagement are key to attracting and keeping followers.— Charlotte Abbott

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Other Words from lurk

lurker noun, plural lurkers
a lurker in the shadows A new scam has surfaced on the Internet in which con artists using fake names stage phony conversations about a company's stock. Unsuspecting lurkers—people who read others' conversations but don't participate—think they are privy to a hot stock tip. Playboy

Choose the Right Synonym for lurk

lurk, skulk, slink, sneak mean to behave so as to escape attention. lurk implies a lying in wait in a place of concealment and often suggests an evil intent. suspicious men lurking in alleyways skulk suggests more strongly cowardice or fear or sinister intent. something skulking in the shadows slink implies moving stealthily often merely to escape attention. slunk around the corner sneak may add an implication of entering or leaving a place or evading a difficulty by furtive or underhanded methods. sneaked out early

Examples of lurk in a Sentence

She could tell there was someone out there lurking in the shadows. we caught a glimpse of someone lurking around the corner

Recent Examples on the Web

Some of the spots are peaked into whiteheads, but most are lurking painfully under my skin. Rachel Nussbaum, Glamour, "Erborian's CC Cream Cancels Out Redness Like Magic," 16 Oct. 2018 Even the Panthers are lurking in their swampy, south Florida shadows, ready to rise on the backs of Aleksander Barkov, Jonathan Huberdeau and recently acquired winger Mike Hoffman. Alex Prewitt, SI.com, "In Joining an Up-and-Coming Maple Leafs Squad, John Tavares Gets to Live Out His Dream," 2 July 2018 In front of the wolf, which really is lurking around like an unsubtle metaphor at this point, June emits a primal scream that is an expression of all of her inward trauma. refinery29.com, "The Handmaid's Tale Season 2, Episode 11 Recap: The Wolf Is A Metaphor," 27 June 2018 Although European leaders are marking the country’s apparent success, new problems are lurking elsewhere in the region, putting pressure on Greece’s still fragile economy. Liz Alderman, New York Times, "As Greece Ends a Decade of Bailouts, Problems Linger for Europe," 19 June 2018 Woods, smiling on the driving range Wednesday on the eve of the U.S. Open, is lurking after steady improvement and two top-five finishes in his last nine events. Ron Kroichick, San Francisco Chronicle, "U.S. Open has many contenders, but don’t underestimate Tiger," 13 June 2018 But lurking not far behind were The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research Memorial Hermann Hotwheels Juniors with a 2-1 record. Robert Avery, Houston Chronicle, "Standings take shape in Wheelchair Wind-up Tournament," 26 May 2018 Rickie Fowler and Jon Rahm, each in search of their first major triumph, are lurking and paired in the penultimate group. Steve Dimeglio, USA TODAY, "Rory McIlroy, Patrick Reed insist Masters final round isn't a two-man game," 8 Apr. 2018 Like the visuals, the casual, lived-in approach to world building creates the sense of an entire universe lurking just beyond the edges of the frame, one that will continue living and breathing no matter what happens to Cee and Ezra. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "Prospect is a stylish science fiction movie that puts world building first," 31 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lurk.' 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 lurk

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for lurk

Middle English; akin to Middle High German lūren to lie in wait — more at lower

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Learn More about lurk

Dictionary Entries near lurk

Luri

lurid

luringly

lurk

lurry

lurs

Lusaka

Statistics for lurk

Last Updated

16 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lurk

The first known use of lurk was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for lurk

lurk

verb

English Language Learners Definition of lurk

: to be in a hidden place : to wait in a secret or hidden place especially in order to do something wrong or harmful
computers : to read messages written by other people on the Internet in a newsgroup, chat room, etc., without writing any messages yourself

lurk

verb
\ ˈlərk \
lurked; lurking

Kids Definition of lurk

: to hide in or about a place

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More from Merriam-Webster on lurk

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lurk

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lurk

Spanish Central: Translation of lurk

Nglish: Translation of lurk for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lurk for Arabic Speakers

Comments on lurk

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