'hurrock, rudder-band'

(Modern English hurrock, hurrack)


A Scandinavian origin for this rare English n. has been plausibly, if speculatively, suggested (esp. McGee 399, GollPat and AndersonPat), although the precise etymon is unknown. The nearest comparandum is the modern Shetl. dial word horrack 'the part of the boat between the sternmost seat and the stern' (EDD). Although the etymology is obscure, connections have been suggested with Norw hork 'handle of a basket' as well as Shetl. hank and hoddek 'basket with two loops' (for full discussion and references, see AndersonPat 185n). An elegant solution was proposed by Ekwall (1912: 169), who read this as a form of MED's thurrok (n.) (see discussion by text) < OE þurruc (also of obscure etymology, though cp. Du durk 'bilge' (OED, AEW)), which provides an equally satisfactory sense. This connection too, however, is speculative.

PGmc Ancestor

Proposed ON Etymon (OIcel representative)

(ONP )

Other Scandinavian Reflexes

cp. Norw hork

OE Cognate

Phonological and morphological markers

Summary category



Only cited by MED and OED from Cl, Pat, (a1464) Capgr.Chron. (Cmb Gg.4.12) and once as a surname before the modern Shetl. dial word hurrack (see EDD). OE þurroc occurs twice in glossaries (and in place-names, see MED and EPNE), and ME thurrok is first cited by OED and MED from Chaucer and then in a handful of 15c. texts.

Occurrences in the Gersum Corpus

Cl 419; Pat 185

On the sense of the word, see AndersonPat 185n with references. Ekwall (1912) suggested that hurrok arose from a misinterpretation of þurruc as þ'urrok (see Vant in support of this reading).


MED hurrok (n.) , MED thurrok (n.) , OED hurrock (n.) , OED thurrock (n.) , HTOED , EDD hurrack (sb.), EDD thurrock (sb.1), Torp hork