You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Old Norse’ tag.

Hard work (noun) or to work hard (verb), chiefly British English. C17th meaning the depth of earth that can be dug up at once with a spade. Possibly from Old Norse “groftr”=digging < Old Germanic “grov”=to dig.

Moving with force; to rush or make a rushing sound; to rage like the wind. Old Norse “*hvithra”=to go back and forth in quick, short movements, related to “hvitha”=squall, wind.

An area of swampy or boggy wet ground, especially one in which someone can get stuck. Old Norse “myrr”=bog or moss.

Chiefly British English, to behave in a silly and enjoyable way; to have fun. Possibly northern English dialect “lake”=to play around < Old Norse “leika”=to leap, spring, jump about.

In British English a short post (permanent or temporary) used to prevent traffic from entering an area. Uncertain origin but possibly Old Norse “bol”=stem or trunk of a tree.

A pattern of spirals or concentric circles. Middle English “whorlle”=a small fly-wheel on a spinning machine < Old Norse “hvirfla”=to turn or whirl about.

A piece of food on a hook or trap used to attract an animal. Old Norse “beit”=pasture, food < Germanic “*bitan”=to bite.

Having a lean and haggard appearance, often because of suffering, hunger, or age. Uncertain origin, possibly Old Norse “gand”=a tall thin man or stick.

Something that is extremely helpful and beneficial; a gift. Middle English “bon”=prayer, request < Old Norse “bon.”

A whale of streamlined appearance with pleated skin on the underside. Old Norse “reytharhvalr” < Scandinavian “rauthr”=red + “hvalr”=whale.

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