See also: Silk

English edit

English Wikipedia has an article on:
a silk handkerchief
A performer using silks

Etymology edit

From Middle English silk, sylk, selk, selc, from Old English sioloc, seoloc, seolc (silk). The immediate source is uncertain; it probably reached English via the Baltic trade routes (cognates in Old Norse silki (> Danish silke, Swedish silke (silk)), Russian шёлк (šolk), obsolete Lithuanian zilkaĩ), all ultimately from Late Latin sēricus, from Ancient Greek σηρικός (sērikós), ultimately from an Oriental language (represented now by e.g. Chinese (, silk)). Compare Seres. Doublet of seric.

Pronunciation edit

  • enPR: sĭlk, IPA(key): /sɪlk/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɪlk

Noun edit

silk (countable and uncountable, plural silks)

  1. (chiefly uncountable) A fine fiber excreted by the silkworm or other arthropod (such as a spider).
    The thread made of silk was barely visible.
  2. A fine, soft cloth woven from silk fibers.
    • 1907 August, Robert W[illiam] Chambers, “His Own People”, in The Younger Set, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, →OCLC, page 6:
      It was flood-tide along Fifth Avenue; motor, brougham, and victoria swept by on the glittering current; pretty women glanced out from limousine and tonneau; young men of his own type, silk-hatted, frock-coated, the crooks of their walking sticks tucked up under their left arms, passed on the Park side.
  3. Anything which resembles silk, such as the filiform styles of the female flower of maize, or the seed covering of bombaxes.
  4. The gown worn by a Senior (i.e. Queen's/King's) Counsel.
  5. (colloquial) A Queen's Counsel, King's Counsel or Senior Counsel.
  6. (circus arts, in the plural) A pair of long silk sheets suspended in the air on which a performer performs tricks.
  7. (horse racing, usually in the plural) The garments worn by a jockey displaying the colors of the horse's owner.

Derived terms edit

Translations edit

Verb edit

silk (third-person singular simple present silks, present participle silking, simple past and past participle silked)

  1. (transitive) To remove the silk from (corn).
    • 2013, Lynetra T. Griffin, From Whence We Came, page 17:
      While we shucked and silked the corn, we talked, sang old nursery rhymes []

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