Definition of hark in English:

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Pronunciation: /hɑːk/


[no object]
1 [usually in imperative] literary Listen: Hark! He knocks
More example sentences
  • Nawasi, I speak to you of the future of your people, hark, child, listen.
  • But hark, I hear another mirthful chortle from the professor and I'm off into the undergrowth again in search of another tantalising discovery…
  • But hark… isn't that Carnatic music floating in the air?
1.1 (hark at) British informal Used to draw attention to someone who has said or done something considered to be foolish or silly: just hark at you, speaking all lah-de-dah!
More example sentences
  • We move on March 17th, into leafy Hampstead (ooh, hark at us!) and this utterly cavernous 1930s mansion flat with wooden floors, white walls, enormous windows, gigantic rooms and art deco kitsch tiling in the bathroom.
  • When we were flying to Texas at Xmas (ooh, hark at him!) the plane had a neat feature showing you exactly where we were on the globe and where we'd been.
  • Make a roux (ooh, hark at me and my fancy cookery phrases) by melting the butter in a saucepan, heating it to bubbling point, then adding the flour and stirring until the mixture turns golden.

Phrasal verbs

hark back to

Mention or remember (something from the past): if it was such a rotten holiday, why hark back to it?
Originally a hunting term, used of hounds retracing their steps to find a lost scent
More example sentences
  • The Dutchman has engaged in a PR drive over the past seven days, harking back to the special days of Nicholson.
  • But nowadays, though the old men and women remember, the younger generations no longer hark back to that bitter past.
  • But the event was not simply about harking back to the past.
1.1Evoke (an older style or genre): paintings that hark back to Constable and Turner
More example sentences
  • Reflective surfaces actually hark back to the Art Deco style, though their stylishness seems very ‘LA’ to me.
  • Elsewhere, women's dresses and coats, harking back to '50s and '60s styles and stiffened with foam rubber, hung in rows on the wall.
  • His relaxed guitar style harks back to the Hendrix of Electric Lady Land.
recall, call to mind, look back to, turn back to, cause one to remember, cause one to recollect, cause one to think back to


Middle English: of Germanic origin; related to German horchen, also to hearken.

Words that rhyme with hark

arc, ark, Bach, bark, barque, Braque, Clark, clerk, dark, embark, impark, Iraq, Ladakh, Lamarck, lark, macaque, marc, mark, marque, narc, nark, Newark, park, quark, sark, shark, snark, spark, stark, Vlach

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: hark

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