verb (1)
\ ˈpərk How to pronounce perk (audio) \
perked; perking; perks

Definition of perk

 (Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

1a : to thrust up the head, stretch out the neck, or carry the body in a bold or insolent manner
b : to stick up or out jauntily
2 : to gain in vigor or cheerfulness especially after a period of weakness or depression usually used with up he's perked up noticeably

transitive verb

1 : to make smart or spruce in appearance : freshen, improve often used with up
2 : to thrust up quickly or impudently


verb (2)
perked; perking; perks

Definition of perk (Entry 2 of 3)



Definition of perk (Entry 3 of 3)

: perquisite usually used in plural

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Examples of perk in a Sentence


the salary's not great, but the perks make up for it

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Rainfall and lower temperatures helped slow the fire’s growth last month, but the re-emergence of hotter, drier conditions more recently has caused it to perk up and create more smoke. Madeline Mcgee, Anchorage Daily News, "Smoke to continue drifting into Anchorage intermittently from Swan Lake fire," 17 Aug. 2019 But fear not: Pottery Barn is here to perk you up and keep the obsession alive. Laurel Benedum, ELLE Decor, "Did You Hear About the Epic 'Friends' Collection Pottery Barn is Launching?," 12 July 2019 There, a short distance across the river, was a lion, a male with a rock-star mane that suddenly perked up at the sight of a human walking freely in his domain. Ken Geiger, National Geographic, "Take a solo safari through South Africa’s wild grasslands," 30 May 2019 Her ears perked up and swiveled, marking the source of the sound. Jacqueline Alnes, Longreads, "Lions, Tigers, and a Rabbit Named Bugs: A Reading List on Animal-Human Interactions," 27 Apr. 2017 Registration fees are $80 for the public, $70 for Compass Pointe perks members and $60 for members. Baltimore Sun Staff,, "U.S. wins women’s U19 world lacrosse title, beating Canada, 13-3," 10 Aug. 2019 But as economies perked up, central banks changed course. The Economist, "As yields turn negative, investors are having to pay for safety," 8 Aug. 2019 The warm octopus with fresh mozzarella—at first, a dubious pairing—works because the spongy textures of both are perked up by the lemon vinaigrette on which they are nestled. Jiayang Fan, The New Yorker, "Jean-Georges’s Revisionist Tweaks at the Fulton," 19 July 2019 However, a few spots at the end, including Becky Lynch taking an End of Days from Baron Corbin, perked the crowd up. Aaron Oster,, "Brock Lesnar cashes in at ‘Extreme Rules’ to become Universal Champion again," 15 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Extra perk: 48 wallet-sized lockers for storing valuables at no extra charge. Jessica Yadegaran, The Mercury News, "7 sensational Bay Area pools to escape the heat," 13 Aug. 2019 Under Armour, Uber and Vice added family-friendly policies, including generous fertility perks, following such controversies. The Economist, "More employers want to help workers make babies," 8 Aug. 2019 Another perk worth noting: loyal Platinum Card and Centurion Members will have a chance to get pulled into front row seats at Centre Court directly facing the Royal Box when booking through Amex's By Invitation Only program. Jaimie Potters, Town & Country, "The Best Ways to Experience Wimbledon," 7 Aug. 2019 Some spaces have extra luxurious perks, such as beer on tap and podcast recording studios. San Diego Union-Tribune, "These 8 coworking spaces are opening to the public next week — for free," 2 Aug. 2019 However, as the blog My BJ's Wholesale points out, BJ's does have specific perks that Costco does not — for example, it’s coupon book that each member receives monthly. Olivia Muenter, Woman's Day, "Here’s How To Decide Between A BJ’s and Costco Membership If You Don’t Want Both," 16 July 2019 Uber Black customers, typically business travelers with expense accounts, still retain certain perks, like the ability to request help with luggage, access to 24/7 support, and pickup by professional drivers. Andrew J. Hawkins, The Verge, "Uber Comfort lets you request extra legroom and crank up the AC before pickup," 9 July 2019 Reichl’s job had perks that Levine could only imagine in his wildest dot-com IPO fantasies: a company car, with a driver. Washington Post, "From Gourmet to Serious Eats, two food memoirs chronicle the pitfalls of old and new media," 11 June 2019 Read More Charlotte’s grocery store wars have perks – and consequences The grocer is promising a number of upgrades that customers will notice in its supermarkets. Katherine Peralta, charlotteobserver, "Longtime Carolinas grocer 'fit for growth' after emerging from bankruptcy," 31 May 2018

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

Verb (1)

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

Verb (2)

1922, in the meaning defined above


1824, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for perk

Verb (1)

Middle English

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Statistics for perk

Last Updated

31 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for perk

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

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More Definitions for perk



English Language Learners Definition of perk

: something extra that someone receives in addition to regular pay for doing a job
: a good thing that you have or get because of your situation


\ ˈpərk How to pronounce perk (audio) \
perked; perking

Kids Definition of perk

1 : to make or become more lively or cheerful I perked up when I heard the good news.
2 : to make fresher in appearance Let's perk the room up with fresh paint.
3 : to lift in a quick, alert, or bold way The dog perked its ears.

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More from Merriam-Webster on perk

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with perk

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for perk

Spanish Central: Translation of perk

Nglish: Translation of perk for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of perk for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about perk

Comments on perk

What made you want to look up perk? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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