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irk Syllabification: irk

Definition of irk in English:


[with object]
Irritate; annoy: it irks her to think of the runaround she received
More example sentences
  • It's the third essay which is particularly irking me, and which has provoked this writing.
  • It is a significant Scottish story, yet it irks Miller that the London financial media display scant interest in its continued success, simply because it is a private firm.
  • What irked me originally, and irks me now, is that two newspapers (at least) should have printed what was clearly an overly rosy version of the facts.
irritate, annoy, gall, pique, nettle, exasperate, try someone's patience;
informal get someone's dander up, ruffle someone's feathers, make someone's hackles rise
rub the wrong way, get (someone's goat), get/put someone's back up, make someone's blood boil, peeve, miff, frost, rile, aggravate, needle, get to, bug, drive mad/crazy, tee off, tick off, piss off, PO, rankle, ride, drive up the wall, make someone see red


Middle English (in the sense 'be annoyed or disgusted'): perhaps from Old Norse yrkja 'to work'.

  • Work irks many people, and may be related to irk, which possibly derives from Old Norse yrkja ‘to work, take effect upon’. Its earliest sense in English was ‘to be annoyed or disgusted’.

Words that rhyme with irk

berk, berserk, Burke, cirque, dirk, Dunkirk, erk, kirk, lurk, mirk, murk, outwork, perk, quirk, shirk, smirk, stirk, Turk, work
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