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See also: Bork and börk




Etymology 1Edit

From the unsuccessful 1987 United States Supreme Court nomination of Robert Bork (1927–2012).[1]


bork (third-person singular simple present borks, present participle borking, simple past and past participle borked)

  1. (transitive, US, politics, often pejorative) To defeat a judicial nomination through a concerted attack on the nominee's character, background, and philosophy.
    • 2002 February 7, Orrin G[rant] Hatch, “Statement of the Honorable Orrin Hatch, United States Senator, Utah [The Nomination of Charles W. Pickering to be United States Circuit Court Judge for the Fifth Circuit]”, in United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary[2], archived from the original on 21 September 2008:
      After an eight-year hiatus, these groups are back on the scene, ready to implement an apparent vicious strategy of Borking any judicial nominee who happens to disagree with their view of how the world should be.
    • 2004, Joseph Michael Green, “Media Activity”, in Your Past and the Press!: Controversial Presidential Appointments: A Study Focusing on the Impact of Interest Groups and Media Activity on the Appointment Process, Lanham, Md.: University Press of America, ISBN 978-0-7618-2802-0, page 131:
      [Stephen L.] Carter believes that liberals seem to think that only conservatives "bork" and likewise conservatives seem to believe that only liberals "bork," but the unhappy truth is that everybody "borks".
    • 2005, Mark [Victor] Tushnet, “A Supreme Court United?”, in A Court Divided: The Rehnquist Court and the Future of Constitutional Law, New York, N.Y.: W. W. Norton & Company, ISBN 978-0-393-05868-0, page 340:
      Forcing their adversaries to bork nominees may, they may think, lead voters in the middle to think less well of liberals, enhancing the distaste for Washington politics that has helped conservatives gain political power.
    • 2006 October 30, Jeffrey Lord, “Borking Rush”, in American Spectator[3], archived from the original on 17 October 2017:
      Above all it discusses the best tactics to defeat a borking. Having been in the [Ronald] Reagan White House when Robert Bork was borked, I knew something about the subject, which was a huge help when the same borking guns were turned on my friend Judge [D. Brooks] Smith years later.

Etymology 2Edit

Possibly derived from borken, an intentional misspelling of the word broken used in ironic or humorous contexts; or from usage described under Etymology 1.


bork (third-person singular simple present borks, present participle borking, simple past borked, past participle borked or borken)

  1. (transitive, slang) To misconfigure, especially a computer or other complex device.
    The computer is borken.
    • 2017 September 22, Chris Merriman, “Microsoft is Looking at Opening a London Flagship Store at Oxford Circus: It’s so Close to the Apple Store, You’ll be Able to Piggyback the WiFi”, in The Inquirer[4], archived from the original on 22 September 2017:
      The building is currently occupied by Benetton, but we could be about to see the beautiful range of multi-ethnic models in overpriced clothes replaced by models that get borked with every upgrade … oh, and are also overpriced.
  2. (transitive, slang) To break or damage.
    • 2014 January, Naomi Kramer, Yesterday’s Cat: Episode 1: Before the Storm, [Los Gatos, Calif.]: Smashwords, ISBN 978-1-311-37050-1:
      Angie sat back and stared at the screen. Well, that screwed her up good and proper. Go to the brass with information that might put her in the slam … or go it solo and risk borking up the situation even worse than it was already.
    • 2017 October 4, Chris Merriman, “Indiana Couple Defraud Amazon to the Tune of $1.2m … and You’ve been Done”, in The Inquirer[5], archived from the original on 5 October 2017:
      Using hundreds of false identities, the couple ordered electronics, including GoPro digital cameras, Microsoft Xboxes and Samsung smartwatches, then claimed that they were borked in some way. The couple then demanded replacements, before selling them on to a third party, []

Etymology 3Edit

From the species name of Pagothenia borchgrevinki.


bork (plural borks)

  1. (informal) The bald notothen or bald rockcod (Pagothenia borchgrevinki), a species of cod icefish (Nototheniidae) native to the Southern Ocean.
    • 2004, Terre M. Williams, The Hunter’s Breath: On Expedition with the Weddell Seals of the Antarctic, New York, N.Y.: M. Evans and Company, ISBN 978-1-59077-028-3, page 199:
      Near the water surface, Mayflower hunted for larger prey in the form of "borks." Pagothenia borchgrevinki "bork," for short—are buggy-eyed, dark-spotted fish with a Mohawk ridge of fins along the top. They live among the ice crystals formed by the platelet ice, hiding just below the frozen surface of the sea in -3°C (27°F) water.
    • 2012, James McClintock, “Life Adrift: The Small Organisms Matter”, in Lost Antarctica: Adventures in a Disappearing Land, New York, N.Y.: Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN 978-0-230-11245-2:
      On entering the Aquarium Building, I bumped into John Janssen, a biologist studying the behavior and physiology of Antarctic fish, and now a professor of biology at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. John stood near a large circular seawater tank containing a school of "borks" (Pagothenia borchgrevinki), silvery, foot-long, trout-shaped Antarctic fish that feed on plankton. The majority of Antarctic fish live on the seafloor, but borks live in the water column, hiding from sea predators in the cracks and crevices of the sea ice.


  1. ^ Arthur Higbee (13 January 1993), “American topics”, in International Herald Tribune[1], archived from the original on 26 October 2005.

Norwegian NynorskEdit

bork (exterior covering of a tree)


From Old Norse bǫrkr.


bork m (definite singular borken, uncountable)

  1. bark (exterior covering of a tree)
    Borken til treet hadde falle av.
    The bark of the tree had fallen off.
  2. cortex (outer layer of an internal organ or body structure)