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Middle English[edit]



  1. past tense of speak





  1. simple past tense of speak
    • 1806, Walter Scott, Minstrelsy of the Scottish border (3rd ed) (1 of 3)[1]:
      Then spak the lord, hight Hamilton, And to the nobil king said he, "My sovereign prince, sum counsell take, First at your nobilis, syne at me.
    • 1905, Robert Louis Stevenson, David Balfour, Second Part[2]:
      But whan he spak, it was mair in sorrow than in anger.
    • 1898, Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr, Scottish sketches[3]:
      And I'll do this messenger justice; he laid down no law to me, he only spak o' the duty laid on his own conscience; but my conscience said 'Amen' to his--that's about it.
    • 1896, Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch, Adventures in Criticism[4]:
      Ful wel she song the service divyne, Entuned in hir nose ful semely; And Frensh she spak ful faire and fetisly, After the scole of Stratford atte Bowe, For Frensh of Paris was to hir unknowe..."
    • 1919, Frederic Moorman, More Tales of the Ridings[5]:
      Them was t' truest words he iver spak, an' shoo would hae been muck-cheap if I'd gien a million pund for her."
    • 1857, Various, The Modern Scottish Minstrel, Volume IV.[6]:
      I went unto her mother, and I argued and I fleech'd, I spak o' love and honesty, and mair and mair beseech'd; But she was deaf to a' my grief, she wadna look on me; O poverty!
    • 1904, Robert Louis Stevenson, The Merry Men[7]:
      Het as he was, he took a kind o' cauld grue in the marrow o' his banes; but up he spak for a' that; an' says he: 'My friend, are you a stranger in this place?'


Etymology 1[edit]

From Old Swedish spaker (wise, clever).


spak (comparative spakare, superlative spakast)

  1. powerless, tired, obedient, tame, calm, easy, reasonable; of a person or animal that used to resist, but has given up the fight; of calm water
    spak som ett lamm
    tame as a lamb
Related terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Old Swedish spaker (rod, stick, lever), from Middle Low German spake, cognate with Danish spag (spoke), Dutch spaak (spoke), and English spoke.


spak c

  1. a lever, a rod, a handle, a stick, a joystick, a control
    nazisterna sitter vid spakarna
    the nazis are in control
Related terms[edit]